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Barcelona vs Valencia Match Preview, Match Info

With the international break finally over, football fans will be treated with the return of La Liga this weekend. There will be much to play for between the teams that will be involved in the upcoming matches, but there will also be some surprises for those who have not been up to speed in recent developments concerning this league.

Unfortunately, Atlético Madrid and Real Madrid will not be around to defend their spots in the standings after they decided to postpone their games following the international break. Both sides had quite a bit of players called up for this break, and with many of those coming back from South America, they were granted a request to have their games postponed. Hence, we could have a solitary leader if things go as expected this weekend.

Here's what's in store for fans this week in the Spanish top-flight.

La Liga - League standings after Matchday 8

Considering that Real Madrid and Atlético will have the weekend off, this will be the time for Real Sociedad to shine. The txuri-urdin will try to break the tie between them and the Madrid-based teams and earn the top spot in the league, which should add a bit more spice to what happens in La Liga moving forward.

Top games to watch

Real Sociedad vs Mallorca - The game where the blue and white side will aim to claim the top spot for themselves is set to take place this Saturday, and Mallorca will surely become a tough opponent considering their performance this season. The red and black side are fresh off a win against Levante, and adding one more win to their record will surely boost their chances to avoid relegation.

Celta de Vigo vs Sevilla - Los Hispalenses will make the trip to Balaidos with nothing but a win on their minds, mainly due to the fact that they can reach the top spot in the league if Real Sociedad drop points. As for the hosts, this clash will give them an opportunity to return to winning ways after losing to Elche prior to the break, which saw them slip all the way down to 16th place.

Barcelona vs Valencia - Los Blaugranas have never been closer to the top five than prior to this weekend, and one win here could get them to those spots this weekend. The main problem for them has to do with their rival, Valencia, who have the same amount of points as Ronald Koeman's men with one game in hand. This will also bee a good chance for Barcelona fans to see if the team shows some improvement after their last outing, when Atlético defeated them 2-0 practically without breaking a sweat. 

La Liga - Who's in and who's out for Matchday 9

Barcelona - Injured: Pedri, Ousmané Dembelé, Ronald Araujo, Moussa Wagué, Martin Braithwaite. Doubtful: Sergio Agüero.

Real Betis - Injured: Victor Ruiz, Youssouf Sabaly.

Real Sociedad - Injured: Carlos Fernández, Nacho Monreal, Jon Guridi, Diego Rico. Doubtful: David Silva, Jon Pacheco, Asier Illarramendi, Alexander Sorloth.

Sevilla - No missing players.

Valencia - Injured: José Gayá, Thierry Correia, Carlos Soler.