Athletic Bilbao vs Barcelona betting preview

It’s been a tough week for Barcelona who will be aiming to return to winning ways when they face Athletic Bilbao in the final of the Copa del Rey on Saturday.

The Blaugrana were on an impressive run before last week’s Clasico defeat to bitter rivals Real Madrid. That defeat saw Real Madrid move ahead of them on the league, as the title race gets keener.

Now, though, Barcelona have the chance to win their first trophy of the season and gain the early bragging rights over their rivals. Standing in their way, though, is an Athletic Bilbao team who are also currently struggling.

Los Leones are languishing in 11th position in La Liga, having lost their last six matches in all competitions. They also recently suffered an agonizing loss to Real Sociedad in the delayed final of last season’s Copa del Rey.

The above points to a side that is badly out of form but Athletic Bilbao have often been tough customers for Barcelona, especially in cup competitions.

Should they kick into gear and find their rhythm on Saturday, it won’t be an easy affair for Barcelona, who will be desperate for a win. Despite losing to Real Madrid last week, Barcelona are just two points behind La Liga leaders Atletico Madrid.

Ronaldo Koeman has not been able to pick Gerard Pique for matches due to a niggle injury but the center-back should be fit to return to the starting line-up this weekend.

Athletic Bilbao also have no injury problems and will be relying on the qualities of Asier Villaibre and Ibai Gomes to get the necessary result against Barcelona.

As of the time of filing this article, Barcelona are priced at 1.58 by Betika to win, while Athletic Bilbao have a winning odd of 5.80. A draw is, however, priced at 4.60.