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Levante have a poor record against Barcelona.

Levante vs Barcelona: 3 things that could shape the outcome of La Liga clash

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Levante against Barcelona is almost always a bit of a mismatch, but this fixture could surpass all those before it.

Luis Enrique's side are flying high at the top whilst their hosts sit at the foot of La Liga, amongst the lowest scorers in the division and with the third worst defensive record.

Barcelona, meanwhile, are second highest scorers in the Spanish top-flight, second only to Real Madrid.

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There's a very miniscule chink of light that could give the hosts some hope, though. Let's take a look at three things that could affect the outcome at the Estadi Ciutat de Valencia.

SECOND STRING

Because this game falls right between two Copa Del Rey semi-final legs for Barcelona, Levante may benefit from some wholesale changes made by opposing manager Enrique.

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This is still a game that needs to be won, of course, but with another six games to play in February after the gruelling nine in January, a rest for some of Barca's senior stars will be of obvious benefit.

Fighting for their lives, Levante won't need any encouragement to really go for it knowing even a point will be a victory of sorts.

Enrique does need to be a little bit careful because rotations have hurt him in the past; it's a very fine line and one that the manager will need to tread carefully on.

Athletic Club de Bilbao v FC Barcelona - Copa del Rey: Quarter Final

HISTORY AGAINST HOSTS

The weight of history is most definitely against Levante - we have to go back 12 years for the last time the club secured a victory over Barcelona and six fixtures ago when they last took a point from the reigning champions. 

Since then, the scores have been 4-1, 5-1, 5-0, 5-0 and 4-1 in favour of Barca.

At the moment, only four points separate Levante from the safety of 17th in the table. Three points is vital to their ambitions of staying in the Spanish top-flight.

FC Barcelona v Levante UD - La Liga

Do so here and not only will it give them a boost in their fight for survival, but it will very much change the landscape at the opposite end of the table.

TOO OPEN

Levante have conceded ten goals in their last four matches. Despite the capture of Giuseppe Rossi, who should at least give them some punch up front, they remain far too open at the back.

Zouhair Feddal has endured a horrific time in particular of late, with far too many defensive mistakes creeping into his game.

Against Barca, they cannot afford to continue with their attacking 4-3-3 formation - they will simply be torn to shreds.

FBL-ESP-LIGA-BARCELONA-LEVANTE

A defensive 5-3-2 would serve a much better purpose and may even allow them a foothold in the game until the latter stages.

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Topics:
Barcelona
La Liga
Lionel Messi
Football

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