|Jordi Masip in training ahead of Hércules clash | Image: FCB|
FC Barcelona coach Luis Enrique has named 16 players in the team’s squad to travel to Valencia and face Spanish third division side Hércules in their first game of the 2016/2017 Copa del Rey season as they seek their 28th crown and a third title in a row.
Barça have been playing badly recently and coach Luis Enrique has come under fire, he is aware that despite the game being a not-so-important one, there’s a need to give the fans a good time and something to be joyous about. With the first Clásico of the 2016/2017 coming up in a few days time, Luis Enrique knows that key players cannot be risked in the first round of the Copa del Rey tournament, therefore, he’s given a lot of them rests and more time to prepare for the Clásico on Saturday.
The likes of Lionel Messi, Luís Suárez, Neymar, Andrés Iniesta, Iván Rakitic, Sergio Busquets, Gérard Piqué, Jordi Alba, Javier Mascherano and Marc-André Ter Stegen have all been given rests and didn’t make the squad for the game. Samuel Umtiti has been declared fit, hence included.
Aleix Vidal gets the Ok and is part of the squad while Jordi Masip joins Jasper Cillessen as goalkeepers included. Jérémy Mathieu is still battling with injuries but Arda Turan has returned and will lead the attack against the Valencia side. B players Nili, Borja, Carbonell, Cardona, and Aleña have all been included in the squad.
BARÇA SQUAD VS HÉRCULES
Jasper Cillessen, Jordi Masip, Aleix Vidal, Nili, Borja, Samuel Umtiti, Lucas Digne, Carlés Aleña, Carbonell, Sergi Roberto, Rafinha Alcántara, Denis Suárez, Arda Turan, Paco Alcácer, André Gomes, Cardona