Indispensable at the Bernabéu
Valdes, Alves, Piqué, Xavi, and Leo Messi have always started the matches for Guardiola in the Barça away games in Madrid. They are key players in the team’s success.
With Guardiola as manager, Barça have never lost at the Bernabéu, and 5 players have started all
those 4 games in Madrid. Valdes, Alves, Pique, Xavi, and Messi have been indispensable for Pep in
Madrid. Their performances were decisive in the recent victories away at their eternal rival.
The goalkeeper has played all 360 minutes of the last 4 away games in Madrid.
He’s only let in 3 goals (in the 6-2 win 3 years ago, and in last year's league game), but in
the 2 other games he kept a clean sheet. Especially important was the fact that he kept a clean
sheet in the first leg of the semifinals of the Champions League last season.
Alves and Pique
Alves and Pique are doubtful at the moment (with Guardiola they have been certain
starters in the Bernabéu). The Brazilian only arrived in Barcelona on Thursday, and has only
trained 3 times with the squad after playing in the Copa America, and Pique is recovering from a
hamstring pull in his right leg. Whatever happens, Pique wants to be there.
In midfield, Xavi has played 14 matches in Madrid and the balance is quite positive
with 5 wins, 4 draws and 5 losses. The last defeat was back in 2008, with Frank Rijkaard as
manager. Xavi has had a lot to do with Barça’s success. Two assists of his paved the way to
victory 2 years ago in the Bernabeu
The Argentine striker always wants to play and has not missed any of the last 4
games in Madrid. 4 games to remember and he was decisive in all of them. His 6 goals helped Barça
to 3 wins and a draw.