Barcelona v Espanyol : Guardiola to sign off as at home with Messi show
Barcelona will be looking to mark Pep Guardiola’s last home game in charge of the club with victory this weekend when they take on Espanyol on Saturday evening, as Betfred announce La Liga free bets and predictably make the Catalan giants heavy odds on favourites to take the points
The Barcelona boss announced he was to leave the club at the end of the campaign and there is no doubt that it is the end of a fabulous era at the Nou Camp.
There are some that will wonder whether the last five years or so can ever be replicated.
Nobody will be looking beyond the end of this season quite yet though as after this final home game of the season – which is sure to be an emotional occasion – Barcelona still have the Copa del Rey final against Athletic Bilbao to contend with.
With Real Madrid securing the league title during the week, there is no doubt that this match against Espanyol is all about Guardiola. He will not want it to be this way, but the fans and players will be looking to put on a show for him.
Looking at the recent form of Barcelona, there is no doubt that they are looking to finish the season strongly. They may not be winning the league, but the 7-0 win at Ray Vallecano and the 4-1 victory at home to Malaga have made it clear that they aren’t taking their foot off the gas.
As for Espanyol, they will know that they face a tough challenge to get anything this weekend. They can afford to enjoy the occasion though as they are mathematically assured of their place in La Liga for next season.
They will want a positive result to end their bad run of form though. Going into this weekend, they have lost three games in succession and only one of their last nine games. To say they are stuttering towards the end of the season would be an understatement.
Espanyol do still have a chance of finishing in the top half – only five points separate them from 6th position – so there is motivation to get back to winning ways. They could do with some momentum to take into next season too.
Overall though, Barcelona are expected to be victorious on the pitch, giving manager Guardiola a good Nou Camp send off in the process. This one gets underway at 8pm on Saturday evening.