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Aug 17, 2012

  • Tito Vilanova debuts as Barca Manager at Camp Nou.
  • Messi, Xavi, Iniesta all are expected to start FC Barcelona's First Liga Match.

Lionel Messi against Real Sociedad

The time has arrived to start the pursuit for another La Liga title and also to kick start a new era, which hopefully will be called as the "Tito Era". Tito Vilanova has managed Barca in all the pre-season friendlies with distinction, but this is the real deal. Usually a season starts with the two Super Copa match, but this time around the League start before the Copa matches. I would say it's a good omen. Even Guardiola also kick started his campaign in Spain with the League. Guardiola, who was the most successful manager in our club's history didn't have a great start to the season, even though it wasn't that bad. But Tito Vilanova does not have that luxury to afford a average start to the season. Going by last season's record, we can ill afford to lose any points as our great rivals Madrid won't be dropping much. For all the noise the Madrid based fans and media (also the English media) makes, we went down to them only once last season. What made it a killer blow was our lacklustre performance away from home in the first half of the season. We can't afford to do the same this season. We needs to be on the game from the word "Go". In that sense we will not get a better game to start the league than against Real Sociedad. Their last visit to Cam Nou gave us a narrow 2-1 victory, but the away draw against them hurt us in La Liga last season. Watch the highlights from FC Barcelona - 2 : 1 - Real Sociedad to re-live the match.

Vilanova will have almost the whole squad except Thiago to call upon for the his debut in La Liga on Sunday Night. With a Clasico round the corner, it's easy for everyone to lose the focus on job in hand. And that's the primary task for Vilanova to do. One good thing about picking Vilanova after Guardiola is that the players don't have to have an adjustment period. Essentially it's the same work and tactics of last season which is going to continue. With an international fixture in midweek, Tito would play a bit safe with some players. The entire Spanish squad flew to South America for a friendly and that means some of them will see starting from the bench. Alexis is the last one two join the squad after international duty and should see him start from the bench.

We may not see any major experiment with the formation by Tito in his first competitive match in charge. He should ideally go with the traditional 4-3-3 formation. Valdes should feature in goal. The defense should see Alves, Mascherano, Puyol and Adriano. Pique could be rested after a long journey to South America. The midfield selection could be a tricky one. Cesc, Iniesta and Busquest all were called upon for mid week fixture. Even then atleast two of them are expected to feature in starting eleven. I am banking on for Tito to line up Busquets, Xavi and Iniesta in the middle. The front three shoudl ideally see Messi playing the false 9 with Afellay and Pedro on either side. What about the prediction? I will go with a comfortable 3-0 victory for our boys.

All About FC Barcelona is a Blog dedicated to the Most prestigous Club in the world, FC Barcelona by an ardent fan. Here I discuss about the Latest happening surrounding our Club and present my Views about the same.

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