Barcelona XI vs Real Madrid confirmed: A strong side but these fans react as stalwart gets dropped again

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It was starting to look like Ivan Rakitic’s career at Barcelona was about to kick start again when he featured in a couple of recent games, there were even some mutterings in Spain that he would start against Real Madrid tonight.

Unfortunately for the Croatian he’s been returned to the bench as Ernesto Valverde appears to have settled on Sergi Roberto for the midfield. Apart from that, the formidable front three will be on show and it looks like a strong side:

Roberto was always a midfielder for the youth teams before he broke into the first team, but he’s often been used as a right back ever since Dani Alves left a few years ago. One of the main criticisms of his game is the lack of pace, so central midfield could be the ideal place for him.

READ MORE: Real Madrid XI confirmed to face Barcelona: The ultimate chance at redemption for ace but these fans fume as key player dropped

The main talking point from these fans on Twitter comes after seeing Rakitic being immediately returned to the bench, just when it seemed he might have a role to play again:

This does seem to be the clearest sign yet that Ivan Rakitic could be out the door in January. He’s been so vital to the team for years and is closing in on 300 appearances for the club , but being snubbed for the biggest game of the year after playing himself back into contention might not go down so well.

Despite that, it’s a big chance for Sergi Roberto to establish himself in his favoured position and show what he can do. Barca can put some distance between themselves and Madrid at the top of the league with a win, so they need a big performance from everyone.

Things do seem to have taken a late twist as an updates starting XI has emerged that now shows Rakitic starting instead of Sergio Busquets:

It’s absolutely worth keeping an eye on this one until it actually kicks off, perhaps this could now be the chance for Rakitic to cement his place back in the team.

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