Chelsea vs Barcelona preview, betting tips and prediction: Blaugrana to take early advantage to Camp Nou
Barcelona to win and BTTS @ 3/1 with Betfair
Barcelona to win with Luis Suarez to score first @ 9/2 with Betfair
Under 2.5 goals @ Evens
When Barcelona have met Chelsea in the Champions League over the past decade, it has led to drama, controversy and, above all, entertainment. It all started in 2005, at this very stage of the competition, the last 16, when Jose Mourinho led his Blues side into the next round after a 4-2 win at Stamford Bridge, but not before a furore involving referee Anders Frisk at the Camp Nou, which led the Swede to give up his game. In 2009, it was Barcelona’s turn to go through on the way to winning the competition under Pep Guardiola, but again the officials were at the centre of a storm. The semi final in 2012 saw Roberto Di Matteo’s unlikely lads knock Guardiola’s Goliaths out on the way to their own triumph.
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Ernesto Valverde’s side are not as swashbuckling as Guardiola’s, while Chelsea are not as tight as they were almost six years ago. Antonio Conte is struggling, and Barça are in great form, meaning this game is likely to go one way.
Chelsea may have eased past both West Brom and Hull City at Stamford Bridge this week, but their troubled season has rarely seemed anything else. They are still in the FA Cup but face a battle to finish in the Premier League’s top four.
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Due to the sticky form of both Madrid clubs and Valencia’s inexperience, Barcelona appear to have LaLiga all but wrapped up already and have remained unbeaten without really being too spectacular.
Tiemoue Bakayoko may miss out for Chelsea but Alvaro Morata is likely to start up front, while Barcelona have no fresh injury concerns.