So, for all this talking up Mario Hermoso and this supposedly being "audition" for a potential move to one of the big boys in January, the Espanyol center-back appears to be injured. Which is a shame. But, Piatti, Granero, Leo Baptistao …. that's a pretty strong bench, it has to be said.
Espanyol (4-3-3, probably): Diego Lopez; Javi Lopez, David Lopez, Oscar Duarte, Didac Vila; Sergi Darder, Marc Roca, Victor Sanchez; Melendo, Borja Iglesias, Hernan Perez. Subs: Roberto, Naldo, Roberto Rosales, Sergio Garcia, Leo Baptistao, Pablo Piatti, Esteban Granero
For Barcelona, Arturo Vidal has recovered from illness, Lenglet continues at center-back while Arthur has not made it in time after suffering, wait for it, "muscular overload" against Atletico. Ousmane Dembele – Coutinho is on the bench against his former club. A sign, perhaps, that Valverde wants to keep Espanyol at arm's length.
Barcelona (4-3-3, definitely): Marc-André ter Stegen; Nelson Semedo, Gerard Pique, Clement Lenglet, Jordi Alba; Arturo Vidal, Sergio Busquets, Ivan Rakitic; Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez, Ousmane Dembele. Subs: Jesper Cillessen, Denis Suárez, Coutinho, Munir, Carles Alena, Thomas Vermaelen, Juan Miranda