Barcelona manager, Pep Guardiola, will signal his intent to win La Liga when he fields his strongest possible line up against Racing Santander, but Zlatan Ibrahimovich will play no part in the game in northern Spain.
Ibrahimovich, who joined Barcelona in a €66m deal last summer, has quit Barcelona in favour for a move to AC Milan after falling out with Guardiola over the summer.
Instead, Guardiola will look to Pedro to partner Lionel Messi and David Villa in the 4-3-3 formation, with Andreas Iniesta, Xavi and Sergio Busquets lining the midfield as the team looks to justify their 2/9 favouritism
While Barca have made changes this summer, the Racing Santander side will be virtually identical to the one that ended the last campaign in 16th spot after a dramtic dip in form left them flirting with relegation.
Last season Racing picked up a league low of 17 points at home and haven’t beaten Barca in their last thirteen league encounters and this can be seen in their 14/1 price.
Racing have shipped more goals, 190, against any other side in La Liga and David Villa will be looking for a goal to ensure Barca get the best possible start to their league challenge, he is 11/4 to score first.
Barca know expectations are high, the pressure on Pep Guardiola’s shoulders has intensified since the arrival of Jose Mourinho to Real Madrid, but despite the loss of Ibrahimovich, Barca have improved the squad since last season and can get off to a flyer against Racing.
The Spanish world cup winners can prove their pedigree and expect there to be over 3.5 goals, which is available at 11/10. See the whole Barcelona vs Real Madrid match betting market here.