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UEFA Champions League Final 2011: FC Barcelona Lineup

Pep Guardiola's Barcelona team for the 2011 UEFA Champions League final has been announced, and there are a couple of interesting things going on here. The big story is club captain Carles Puyol not making the starting eleven (assumedly due to injury, although he is on the bench), replaced at centre half by midfielder Javier Mascherano, something that Javier Hernandez will probably be quite excited about. 

Elsewhere Eric Abidal makes a start at left back - the French international had been sidelined for months following surgery to remove a liver tumour, but he's back in the lineup now. It's good news for Barcelona there - he should be able to deal with the likes of Antonio Valencia more comfortably than an out-of-position Puyol, which is what the Catalans had been playing with before Abidal returned.

FC Barcelona (4-3-3): Victor Valdes; Eric Abidal, Javier Mascherano, Gerard Pique, Dani Alves; Sergio Busquets, Xavi Hernandez, Andres Iniesta; David Villa, Lionel Messi, Pedro.

Substitutes: Oier Olazabal, Carles Puyol, Bojan Krkic, Seydou Keita, Ibrahim Afellay, Adriano, Thiago

For news, opinion, and feature articles leading up to the UEFA Champions League final, bookmark this StoryStream and check it often. We’ll have new posts right here throughout the week, during the game, and after the game. For more on the entire world of football, check out SB Nation Soccer. Manchester United fans should head over to The Busby Babe, while Barcelona fans should check out Barca Blaugranes.