Despite it still only being December, a defeat would almost end any hope they have of winning LaLiga Santander and it would only further deepen the crisis in which they’ve been immersed this season. Additionally, another defeat would come as a huge emotional blow for the dressing room.
Barcelona only have 14 points from ten LaLiga Santander games so far this season, which is some way off the level they’ve shown so regularly in recent years.
Ronald Koeman’s side lost last time out against Cadiz, before losing to Juventus in the Champions League as well, and the coach has acknowledged that they have to start winning games if they are to stand any chance in the title race.
Everyone at the club is already under the agreement that there is no more margin for error and that only a win will suffice against Levante. The visitors, meanwhile, come into the game in the relegation zone, but they won’t be arriving to the Camp Nou as pushovers.
Koeman will go with his best possible XI on the night, with attention now firmly fixed on LaLiga Santander as the Champions League has been parked until after Christmas. He will, though, be without Sergi Roberto, Gerard Pique, Ansu Fati and Ousmane Dembele through injury.
There are doubts around their backline. Clement Lenglet needs a partner and it could be any of Ronald Araujo, Oscar Mingueza or even Samuel Umtiti. It looks likely that Frenkie de Jong will play in his usual midfield position alongside Sergio Busquets, and Martin Braithwaite will retain his position in attack.
In the bottom three, Levante have a bit of hope after beating Getafe last week.
The visitors will have to do without Jose Campana though, which will only complicate their task.