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Deportivo represent a test for depleted Barcelona

Whilst on paper, Barcelona's match against 13th placed Deportivo La Coruna on Saturday seems like a simple fixture at home, recent history suggests that it could be anything but an easy win.

The Blaugrana's form of late has been patchy at best, perhaps due to the absence of Lionel Messi through injury, but the side's weaknesses had been exposed prior to that.
In late September, upon returning from the season's first international break, Luis Enrique's men suffered their first defeat of the season, at home, by losing 2-1 to Alaves. Their upcoming clash with Deportivo is shaping up as a similar test.
Once again, player fatigue and injuries will play an integral part into the outcome of Saturday's match. Against Alaves, Enrique chose to play Aleix Vidal and Lucas Digne as the wingbacks in order to give first choice Sergi Roberto and Jordi Alba a rest.
He will likely have no choice this time with Sergi Roberto injuring his abductor in training with Spain prior to their 2-0 win over Albania.
Meanwhile, Alba suffered a thigh strain in the first-half of Spain's match against Italy and will once again be forced to miss the upcoming LaLiga fixture.

It isn't much better further up the field. Neymar is the only attacker out of the MSN triumvirate who is seemingly available after returning to Barcelona earlier than expected due to international suspension. Messi is a big doubt and unlikely to feature while Luis Suarez won't return from international duty with Uruguay until late in the week.


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