Lionel Messi's availability creates questions about Barcelona's attack

David Ramos

With Lionel Messi's status up in the air, there are tons of questions surrounding what Barcelona will do today and how head coach Tito Vilanova will line up his attack.

Is Lionel Messi going to be available today for Barcelona? Will be start or be on the bench? If he can't start, does Cesc Fabregas start in his place? Who starts on the left? What about the right? So many questions!

Our excellent Barcelona blog Barca Blaugranes dove into the Messi question and how they expect Tito Vilanova to react and shape his lineup with his Argentine play maker. Cesc Fabregas appears a lock to get a start with David Villa on the left wing, but there's a debate over what the right move for the right wing would be.

David Villa is virtually a lock on the left wing, but who will line up on the right? Alexis Sanchez put in his best performance of the season against Mallorca, getting two goals and two assists, but he's also been troubled all along by poor finishing.

Pedro has been clutch for his national team, but he's been a bit off for Barcelona. Could he be in line to start on the right? Or will Cristian Tello get a look, considering his good goalscoring record and despite his sometimes questionable decision-making?

There are supporters of a variety of other teams currently throwing their breakfast, lunch or dinner (depending on your current location on the globe) at their computers over the ridiculous depth that Vilanova has to work with. I can sympathize, because the idea of a team being without the likely best player in the world and still in all likelihood being fine is mildly insane.

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