It looks like FC Barcelona will opt for the formula they use in Clásico matches when they go head to head with Atlético Madrid tonight.With both Real Madrid and Chelsea through to the semi finals, Barcelona knows it must turn on the style and up the ante if they want to join them.
Martino obviously wants to use his best players and field his strongest first 11 and he knows full well that fielding 4 top quality midfielders will present a few problems.
For example, If Martino brings on Fàbregas without sacrificing Iniesta or Xavi, he will have to use him up front as a false number 9 and out of his natural position. The Argentine coach has the same problem with Neymar who, as has become clear to everyone, performs much better on the left wing.
Therefore, Martino’s best option is to use Cesc Fàbregas in a centre-forward position which would allow both Andrés Iniesta and Neymar Jr to play in their natural positions. In fact, this territory isn’t new to Cesc as he has already played in the number 9 position when Messi was out injured. The Barcelona coach employed the very same tactic of moving Messi to the wing against Real Madrid at the Camp Nou with great effect.
Bartra and Mascherano will make up the central defense as Gerard Piqué and Carles Puyol are both out injured. The Barça captain has travelled with the squad but is still awaiting the “Green Light” from the club’s medical staff. For young Marc Bartra,this will be a baptism of fire, as it were, although he did play both legs of the Champions League last season against Bayern Munich.
This is going to be a fantastic game for sure and both teams will go all out for clinching that highly valued semi final place in the Champions League. Manchester United take on Pep Guardiola’s Bayern Munich in the other quarter final which should also be interesting. United have found their feet at last and should present a problem for Bayern who only managed a 1-1 draw at Old Trafford last week. Anything can happen as was proved last night when Mourinho’s “Blues” dumped PSG out of the competition overturning their 1-3 defeat by snatching a 2-0 win.