Barcelona Vs. Malaga, 2012 La Liga Week 36: Blaugrana Preparing For Cup Final

Head Coach Manuel Pellegrini of Malaga smiles before the La Liga match between Malaga and Barcelona at La Rosaleda Stadium in Malaga, Spain. Barcelona won 3-1. (Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images)

Barcelona begins preparation for the Copa del Rey Final against a Malaga side with something big to play for.

With the league essentially lost and Champions League dreams dashed, Barcelona has but one thing to focus on for the remainder of the season: Copa del Rey. With that goal in mind, Pep Guardiola will spend his final weeks in charge of the Blaugrana making sure they are ready for their last shot at silverware at the end of May.

Guardiola said today in his press conference that his objective is to mentally prepare his team for the Cup final and that each game and training session is in preparation of that goal. With that in mind, Jose Manuel Pinto will take over in goal for the rest of the season as he will be starting against Bilbao on May 25th. This week's cathartic cleansing victory over Rayo Vallecano no doubt helped, but there's plenty of work to be done.

Javier Mascherano is doubtful with a leg injury, while Xavi and Gerard Pique are out. Dani Alves, Andres Iniesta and Cesc Fabregas may all see time after starting on the bench last weekend.

It's been a dream season for former Madrid boss Manuel Pellegrini and Malaga and it could get even better. Los Boquerones are looking to leap Valencia into third place after defeating Los Che on the weekend. Midfielder Enzo Maresca is out for the season with a shoulder injury sustained on Sunday. Jeremy Toulalan, Joris Mathijsen, Willy Caballero and Julio Baptista are all out while fullback Nacho Monreal is doubtful with a groin strain. Midfielder Isco is also out serving a one-match ban.

Game Date/Time: Wednesday, May 2, 2 p.m. ET, 8 p.m. local

Venue: Camp Nou, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain

TV: ESPN2 (U.S. - English), ESPN Deportes (U.S. - Spanish), GolTV (Canada), Sky Sports 2 (U.K.)

Online: ESPN3

For more on Barca, head over to FC Barcelona blog Barca Blaugranes.

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