Barcelona’s unrelenting effort to land their first La Liga title since 2018/19 continues on Sunday against perennial relegation strugglers Cadiz.
Only three days after the Spotify Camp Nou faithful witnessed an action-packed 2-2 Europa League draw, Xavi Hernandez’s men return to their famous home ground to pick up the slacks.
Although Marcus Rashford & Co found a way to beat Marc-Andre ter Stegen twice on Thursday, the Catalans’ defensive resilience has been off the charts in La Liga this season.
Except for a 1-1 draw against cross-town rivals Espanyol on the final day of 2021, Barcelona have kept a clean sheet in their remaining nine home league outings (W8, D1).
Pedri finished off a sublime build-up play in style to fire the Blaugrana to a 1-0 win at Villarreal last weekend, preserving an eight-point lead at the summit.
Similarly to their hosts, visiting Cadiz won their respective league fixture last time out as winter recruits Gonzalo Escalante and Sergio Guardiola scored before half-time to inspire a 2-0 home victory over Girona.
That triumph maintained the visitors’ patchy form in La Liga, with Sergio Gonzalez’s men alternating between wins and losses in their last four top-flight games (W2, L2).
Bucking that trend at Camp Nou seems unlikely, although upsetting the odds could prove a turning point for the Yellow Submarine, who start this round only two points clear of the relegation zone.
Despite a substantial gulf in class between the sides, Cadiz have been a thorn in Barcelona’s side in recent years, holding the Catalan powerhouse winless five times in their last six league meetings (D2, L2).
If there was a time to turn the tables, it’s now, with the Blaugrana heading into proceedings unbeaten in 11 straight La Liga matches (W11, D1), including victories in the last six.
The continuation of that high-flying run would see Barcelona string together seven consecutive top-flight wins for only the second time under current boss Xavi.
Back-to-back away league defeats at Sevilla and Athletic Bilbao put Cadiz at risk of losing three consecutive top-flight games on the road for the first time since 2006.
However, the visitors have often faltered at Camp Nou, finding themselves on the receiving end on 11 of their last 14 La Liga visits to Barcelona (W1, D2).
Conceding the opening goal will likely lead to another disappointment, given that Gonzalez’s men have lost all six league games away from home after falling behind this term.
Barcelona vs Cadiz Potential Line-ups
Barcelona (4-3-3): Marc-Andre ter Stegen; Jordi Alba, Andres Christensen, Marcos Alonso, Jules Kounde; Pedri, Frenkie de Jong, Gavi; Raphinha, Robert Lewandowski, Ferran Torres.
Cadiz (4-4-2): Jeremias Ledesma; Iza Carcelen, Fali, Luis Hernandez, Raul Para; Theo Bongonda, Ruben Alcaraz, Fede San Emeterio, Brian Ocampo; Sergio Guardiola, Roger Marti.
Barcelona vs Cadiz Prediction
After going unbeaten on their last two league visits to Camp Nou (W1, D1), Cadiz deserve the benefit of the doubt, but expecting them to add to that tally seems like a tall order.
Barcelona cannot afford to drop points against sub-par rivals if they’re to preserve a healthy lead at the top, so we back them to stop their underwhelming home trend against the Yellow Submarine.
Barcelona 2-0 Cadiz
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