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Barcelona vs. Las Palmas: Three things that will shape the outcome of the La Liga game

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Barcelona are back at Camp Nou to take on the new boys.

Although it's been 13 years since the two teams met, Las Palmas have a reasonable record against the Catalans, having drawn two of their four meetings including at Camp Nou.

A 2-0 home win against Sevilla is creditable indeed and hints that Barcelona might not have it all their own way.

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Let's take a look at three things that could affect the outcome of this game...

Ultra defensive

Barcelona have generally struggled against teams that are particularly defensive. Some term it as "parking the bus."

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Paco Herrera isn't normally known for the same, but perhaps mindful of the limitations of his own squad has set about addressing each opponent with a 5-3-2 formation.

It's incredibly difficult to break down as Barca themselves saw against Levante. It took the hosts 50 minutes to make a breakthrough on that day and arguably Las Palmas will provide much the same resistance.

Clearly, despite having a reasonable front line that includes ex-Barca B player Sergio Araujo - the player who sent Las Palmas back to the promised land - the visitors are intent on denying their opponents opportunities rather than carving them out for themselves.

The team didn't score in three of their opening four games back in the top flight nor did they seem bothered about doing so.

Rotations

We saw Luis Enrique tinker with his side against Levante and although he will take Las Palmas extremely seriously as an opponent, there's every reason to think that he will use his full squad again here.

Barcelona's second Champions League assignment falls just a few days after this game and in order to make some headway at the top of the group, a first-class performance against Bayer Leverkusen with his full squad is a must for Lucho.

Despite being roundly criticised for his rotations last season, the manager had the last laugh bringing home the treble in some style, and with the best numbers seen in Barca's history. Yes, even better that Pep Guardiola's much-heralded vintage.

Weak spine

Barca could be encouraged by the weak spine of the Las Palmas side.

Central defensive midfielder Hernan was their worst performer against Rayo Vallecano and Aythami, sat directly behind him in a back five, was no better.

Luis Suarez, in particular, can ensure that Aythami suffers another uncomfortable ninety minutes, and if Messi was to drop as deep as he did against Levante, Hernan is in for an equally rough ride.

Of course Barca's preference is to spray it to the wings, but with Las Palmas' adequate presence on either side it may pay the Catalans to go straight to the heart of their opponents back line on this occasion.

Will Barcelona get back to winning ways against Las Palmas? Have your say below!

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Topics:
Barcelona
La Liga
Football

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