High-flying La Liga leaders Barcelona will hope to extend their lead atop the table and conclude a successful January with victory when they travel to promoted side Girona in a Catalan derby matchup.
Barcelona won the Supercopa de Espana and advanced to the semifinals of the Copa del Rey, and they can assure themselves of finishing the first half of the La Liga season on top of the league with a win.
It’s the start of an important week in the title race for Barcelona, with three league matches in eight days: away at Real Betis (Wednesday, Feb. 1) and home against Sevilla (Sunday, Feb. 5) to come.
Girona, back in La Liga for the first time since 2018/19, have enjoyed a solid start to the season in their bid to avoid the drop back down to the second division. They sit in 12th place – four points from the relegation zone – and have played well, including earning a draw at Real Madrid.
Girona have lost just one of their last eight La Liga matches. That defeat came via a controversial stoppage-time penalty kick last week at Villarreal.
Sporting News is following the Girona vs. Barcelona match live and providing live score updates, commentary.
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Girona (4-5-1, left to right): 13-Gazzaniga (GK) — 4-Arnau, 15-Juanpe, 2-Bernardo, 3-Miguel — 20-Yan Couto, 14-Aleix Garcia, 18-Romeu, 21-Herrera, 17-Riquelme — 9-Castellanos
Barcelona (4-3-3, left to right): 1-Ter Stegen (GK) — 23-Kounde, 4-Araujo, 24-Eric, 17-Alonso — 30-Gavi, 5-Busquets, 21-De Jong — 22-Raphinha, 10-Fati, 7-Dembele (8-Pedri, 26′)
29th min.: Chance Barcelona. Another giveaway by the Girona backline and Ansu Fati fires a shot high. It’s those types of errors that have cost Girona dearly this season.
26th min.: SUB Barcelona. Pedri in for Dembele and it’s Gavi who moves to take his place wide left with Pedri settling in as the right central midfielder.
24th min.: And with Raphinha struggling, Ousmane Dembele has an issue with his left foot. He’s looking at the bench and Pedri is warming up. He’s asking for a sub.
No puede seguir Dembélé, que no se había lesionado nunca con Xavi. Una pena la lesión del francés, que llega en su mejor momento de forma #fcblive pic.twitter.com/LWQILIlFkN
20th min.: Raphinha is not liking the cold. His latest corner kick was poor, and Girona’s Miguel Gutierrez has owned him on that flank.
15th min.: Chance Barcelona. Girona ‘keeper Paulo Gazzaniga makes his first intervention of the day, coming out to stuff Ousmane Dembele on the left side of the box. Girona gave the ball away in a bad spot.
In the meantime enjoy this nutmeg by Girona left-back Miguel Gutierrez on Barcelona’s Raphinha.
Stop it, @Miguel3Guti! 😜 pic.twitter.com/NdANSVTZV9
10th min.: This match is going just as you’d have imagined. Barcelona owning possession, but they’re dulled by the cold and Girona are the more lively side. The only issue is that the home team can’t keep it for long.
3rd min.: Chance Girona. It’s a quick transition for the home team and Brazilian Yan Couto, who was a surprise inclusion in the lineup, makes the run down the right side of the Barcelona box. But the move leads to a corner. There was a penalty shout, but no infraction on the play. Yan Couto is in his second loan spell from Man City.
1st min.: Barcelona kick off wearing the yellow kits. Raphinha is playing wide right with Ousmane Dembele forcing to occupy the left wing position.
5 mins from kickoff: Both teams are out on the field. Beautiful choreography from the main stand at Girona’s Montilivi Stadium. It’s cold with the wind making it feel like 2 degrees Celsius (35 degrees Farenheit).
15 mins from kickoff: Based on the sounds during warmups, there should be a cracking atmosphere for the match.
It’s really not that cold. 🥶#GironaBarça pic.twitter.com/qcrmtaQlUO
❄️🧣 It’s cold 𝒐𝒖𝒕𝒔𝒊𝒅𝒆.#GironaBarça pic.twitter.com/OCF21a6hIr
35 mins from kickoff: This is the last match that Barcelona will have to do without Robert Lewandowski and Ferran Torres, who are both out due to suspension. Lewandowski had a three-game ban to serve, while Torres had to sit out two matches.
65 mins from kickoff: Lineups are out. Ansu Fati confirmed as the center forward / false nine, and Pedri will be on the bench. Girona go with a defensive-minded 4-5-1 formation.
🚨 BARÇA XI 🚨#GironaBarça pic.twitter.com/lnLytkakup
ONZE! ❤️🤍#GironaBarça pic.twitter.com/99xwg5a4H2
75 mins from kickoff: Here’s a look at Girona’s stadium (Estadio Montilivi) which seats just under 12,000 people. According to Spain’s statistical institute, Girona’s population is just under 800,000.
🪑 Capacidad para 11.850 espectadores
🌡 8º pic.twitter.com/viR65S3nzt
120 mins from kickoff: Since losing 3-1 at Real Madrid on October 16, Barcelona have won seven of their eight La Liga matches, keeping clean sheets in five of those victories.
130 mins from kickoff: Here’s what the Montilivi pitch looked like this morning. Low overnight temperatures meant it was frozen to start the day. They expect it to be fine for play as the temperature rises throughout the day.
🥶 ¡¡PERO QUÉ FRÍOOO!! 🥶
❄️ Las bajas temperaturas llegan al fútbol…¿y pueden condicionar el encuentro?
🏟️ Así ha amanecido Montilivi en la jornada en la que se juega el #GironaBarça 👇https://t.co/RXEPkgyHaR
140 mins from kickoff: The match is a Catalan derby and Barcelona haven’t tasted defeat in one of those for some time.
Barcelona have not lost a Catalan derby in LaLiga since 𝟮𝟬𝟬𝟵 📍 pic.twitter.com/GE2Jm4TcEW
150 mins from kickoff: Barcelona will be donning new threads for the Catalan derby.
🚨 Shirt Alert 🚨
Barcelona release their new Nike Catalan fourth shirt.
‘…featuring the Catalan senyera flag on the chest and taking inspiration from the captain’s armband.’
It will be worn for the first time in the Catalan Derby this weekend. pic.twitter.com/xbYXepLhWO
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Girona manager Michel will have to do without one of his best defenders as centre-back Santi Bueno sits out due to suspension. He also opts to field a right-back at right wing (Yan Couto) instead of the more attack-minded Ivan Martin or Toni Villa who are both on the bench. Brazilian attacker Reinier, defensive midfielder Ibrahima Kebe, and centre-back David Lopez are still out injured.
Girona starting lineup (4-5-1, left to right): 13-Paulo Gazzaniga (GK) — 4-Arnau Martinez, 15-Juanpe, 2-Bernardo Espinosa, 3-Miguel Gutierrez — 20-Yan Couto, 14-Aleix Garcia, 18-Oriol Romeu, 21-Yangel Herrera, 17-Rodrigo Riquelme — 9-Valentin ‘Taty’ Castellanos
Girona subs (12): 1-Juan Carlos (GK), 26-Toni Fuidias (GK), 16-Javi Hernandez, 25-Alexander Callens, 34-Biel Farres, 12-Toni Villa, 24-Borja Garcia, 7-Cristhian Stuani, 23-Ivan Martin, 11-Valery Fernandez, 8-Viktor Tsygankov, 33-Joel Roca
Robert Lewandowski and Ferran Torres are out for Barcelona, serving the final match in their respective suspension. Teenage academy player Angel Alarcon was named to the squad in their absence. Pedri is in the squad against Girona, but he will not start since he’s coming off taking a knock to the knee in the midweek Copa del Rey match.
Barcelona starting lineup (4-3-3, left to right): 1-Marc-Andre ter Stegen (GK) — 23-Jules Kounde, 4-Ronald Araujo, 24-Eric Garcia, 17-Marcos Alonso — 30-Gavi, 5-Sergio Busquets, 21-Frenkie De Jong — 7-Ousmane Dembele, 10-Ansu Fati, 22-Raphinha
Barcelona subs (11): 13-Inaki Pena (GK), 31-Ander Astralaga (GK), 2-Hector Bellerin, 20-Sergi Roberto, 18-Jordi Alba, 15-Andreas Christensen, 28-Alejandro Balde, 19-Franck Kessie, 8-Pedri, 32-Pablo Torre, 38-Angel Alarcon
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The match takes place at the sold-out Estadio Municipal Montilivi, where Girona have lost just two of their nine matches this season (vs. Celta Vigo and Real Sociedad). They have not suffered defeat at home since October 2.
This is only the third trip to the stadium for Barcelona, who have won on each of their previous two visits.
UK: The match will be exclusively available on LaLigaTV.
USA: The Girona vs. Barcelona match will be televised on ESPN Deportes which is streamed on fuboTV. It will also be streamed in English and Spanish on ESPN+.
Canada: TSN holds TV and streaming rights for La Liga in Canada. The Girona vs. Barcelona match will be televised on TSN4 and streaming on TSN’s online platforms.
Australia: Fans in Australia can stream all La Liga matches live and on demand on Optus Sport.