Barcelona vs Arsenal Preview, Team News, Line-Ups, Betting Tips & Predicted Score
Arsenal take on Barcelona in the Champions League tonight. Here’s a preview with team news, likely line-ups, betting tips and predicted score for the game
Arsenal will be looking to pull off a miracle we they take on Barcelona in the second leg of our Champions League last-16 tie at the Nou Camp this evening.
The 2-0 first leg defeat at the Emirates three weeks ago has left us with a mountain to climb if we’re to reach the quarter finals of Europe’s elite competition for the first time since 2009/10.
Lionel Messi scored both goals in North London and it would take a brave man to bet against him getting on the score-sheet again tonight, but even if we do somehow manage to stop the Argentinean super-star we’ve still got the likes of Luis Suarez and Neymar to worry about.
If the task at hand isn’t daunting enough, we head to the Nou Camp in terrible form with two wins in our last ten games in all competitions leaving our season in danger of capitulating.
Sunday’s 2-1 defeat at home to Watford saw us crash out of the FA Cup while we now trail leaders Leicester City by 11 points in the title race, and even with a game in hand the Premier League title looks beyond us this year.
If, as expected, we exit the Champions League this evening, we will have little left to play for during the closing stages of the season, unless Leicester suffer a catastrophic collapse, so the pressure is certainly intensifying on Arsene Wenger’s shoulders.
Laurent Koscielny has been passed fit to return to the squad after recovering from a calf injury that’s kept him out for the last four games.
Calum Chambers hasn’t travelled to Spain so Hector Bellerin will return at right-back while Nacho Monreal should replace Kieran Gibbs at left-back.
Petr Cech remains out with a calf problem so David Ospina will continue in goal while Danny Welbeck and Theo Walcott could come in to the side as their pace would cause Barca some problems on the counter-attack.
Jack Wilshere and Santi Cazorla are back in light training but this game comes too soon so they remain unavailable along with Aaron Ramsey, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Tomas Rosicky.
As for Barcelona, they will be without the suspended Gerard Pique after he picked up his third booking of the competition at the Emirates.
Barcelona 3-1 Arsenal: Despite the fact we need to score at least two goals, Wenger will no doubt set the team up to sit back and try and hit Barca on the counter-attack, but it’s going to be practically impossible to stop MSN tonight. The Catalans have only ever lost once by two clear goals in the Champions League at the Nou Camp and they’re on a 37-game unbeaten run, so I can’t see past anything other than a defeat. Although I do fancy us to nick a goal.
Barca are the clear 1/4 favourites to win the game but Football-Talk can get you enhanced odds of 3/1 on the home side qualifying for the quarter finals – just click here to take advantage of these crazy odds. My prediction of 3-1 is on offer at 9/1 while I also like the look of Lionel Messi to open the scoring at 13/5. If we combined those two bets in a score-cast then we get very tempting odds of 16/1.
What do you think? What line-up would you like to see start?
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