Barcelona vs Arsenal Prediction and Preview – 16/03/16
Champions League preview – Barcelona vs Arsenal prediction.
Gerard Pique’s booking in the first leg means he is out of the Barcelona squad for Wednesday with Jeremy Mathieu favourite to partner Javier Mascherano who is returning from a domestic ban. Goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen has been ever-present in this season’s Champions League and is expected to return to the lineup along with Dani Alves, Sergio Busquets, Ivan Rakatic and Luis Suarez who were rested at the weekend.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has a long list of injuries, the latest of which is influential midfielder Aaron Ramsey which could open the door for Mohamed Elneny to make his first Champions League appearance in an Arsenal shirt. There’s a clamour to bring striker Danny Welbeck back into the lineup and he could start on the right with Olivier Giroud keeping his place down the middle.
Barcelona 4-3-3 formation: Stegen; Alves, Pique, Mascherano, Alba; Rakatic, Busquets, Iniesta; Messi, Suarez, Neymar
Arsenal 4-2-3-1 formation: Opsina; Bellerin, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal; Elnenny, Coquelin; Welbeck, Ozil, Sanchez; Giroud
- Barcelona have won 9 drawn 1 and lost 0 of their last 10 matches
- Arsenal have won 3 drawn 3 and lost 4 of their last 10 matches
- Over the course of their previous 10 matches, Barcelona have scored an average of 3.3 goals and conceded an average of 0.6 goals per game
- Over the course of their previous 10 matches, Arsenal have scored an average of 1.4 goals and conceded an average of 1.2 goals per game
- There have been over 2.5 goals scored in 7 of Barcelona’s previous 10 matches
- There have been over 2.5 goals scored in 6 of Arsenal’s previous 10 matches
Barcelona have won 18 and drawn 1 of the last 19 games and will be bidding for a tenth consecutive Champions League home victory in Camp Nou. Lionel Messi scored twice at the Emirates to give Barca a 2-0 first leg lead and took his personal tally to eight goals in four appearances against Arsenal.
The Gunners’ season is in danger of falling apart after four defeats in the last six games. The solitary win came in the FA Cup replay against lower league Hull but was rendered worthless when losing five days later at home to Watford in the next round. Arsenal’s league ambitions have been damaged by defeats against Swansea and Manchester United, and Wenger’s men are 11 points adrift of the top spot after playing a draw at Tottenham in their most recent Premier League outing.
Pep Guardiola should be able to put the final nail in the coffin of Arsenal’s season but the Gunners won’t go down without a fight.
Barcelona to win at 1/4 with Betbright
Over 2.5 goals at 2/5 with Betfair Sportsbook
Barcelona to win 3-1 at 19/2 with BetVictor