Ousmane Dembele will lead Barcelona's 20-man squad for the Catalan Super Cup clash against Espanyol on Wednesday (7 March) with manager Ernesto Valverde having rested all the first-team players who started during the weekend's crucial victory over Atletico Madrid in La Liga.

The Catalans took a big step towards the La Liga title on Sunday (4 March) as a Lionel Messi free-kick helped Barca open up an eight-point gap over second-place Atletico.

Barcelona still have to finish the job in the remaining 11 league fixtures and will face an even major challenge next Wednesday (14 March) when Chelsea visit the Nou Camp for the decisive second leg of the Champions League last-16 tie.

Valverde has therefore decided to give a much-need rest to the likes of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Philippe Coutinho for the Catalan Super Cup derby which comes before Saturday's [10 March] La Liga trip to Malaga and the visit of the Premier League champions.

Marc Andre Ter Stegen, Ivan Rakitic, Sergio Busquets, Jordi Alba, Sergi Roberto, Gerard Pique, Samuel Umtiti, Paulinho and Thomas Vermalen will also not be considered for selection.

Captain Andres Iniesta has also been ruled out for the clash with Espanyol after being forced off with a hamstring injury in the first half of the win over Atletico.

Meanwhile, long-term absentee Nelson Semedo will also miss the game with the Portugal international expected to be out of action until next month due to another hamstring blow suffered in the recent 6-1 victory over Girona.

With only eight first team players making Valverde's 20-man squad the game is set to provide a golden opportunity for Dembele and other fringe to prove the boss they deserve a role in the title run-in.

Colombia international Yerry Mina is also tipped to get the chance to impress Barcelona fans having only played 97 minutes of football since his January arrival from Palmeiras.

Jasper Cillessen, Denis Suárez, Paco Alcácer, Lucas Digne, André Gomes, Aleix Vidal have made the squad with Valverde promoting 12 players from the second team to make up the numbers.

Marcus McGuane has been given his first call-up with the first-team after the England Under-19 international completed his move from Arsenal to La Masia during the recent January transfer window.