Arsenal v Barcelona preview and tips

Arsenal have lost their two previous two-legged knockout ties against Barcelona. In 2009/10 season (3-6 aggregate) and in 2010/11 (3-4). They also lost 1-2 in the 2006 final of the Champions League at the Stade de France.

Wenger called Barcelona ‘close to perfect’. For one more year the Gunners cannot complain for the unlucky draw since they finished 2nd in their group, topped by Bayern Munich. Arsenal must be very happy with qualification to be honest. They had 3 points in 4 matches and only managed to leave Olympiakos behind them in the goal difference. Deservedly they won 0-3 in Greece and made up for the reverse lost fixture in London (2-3).

Arsenal is chasing the Premier League title for the first time in many years and this might make them… cooler about the Champions League. They want to compete and use all their possibilities, so we expect them to play freely and try to win this one.

Possible lineup
Arsenal: Čech; Bellerín, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Monreal; Ramsey, Coquelin; Walcott, Özil, Sánchez; Giroud.
Out: Arteta (unspecified), Cazorla (knee), Gabriel (hamstring), Wilshere (calf/shin), Rosický (thigh)
Misses next match if booked: Özil, Giroud, Campbell

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Barcelona have been on top form for quite a long time. Their attacking trio, the famous MSN, has been scoring non-stop and covers up any goals allowed from the team’s defence. In the group stage the Blaugrana finished with 14 points, having won 4 and drawn 2 matches. Away from home they only won against BATE Borisov though. The score 1-1 repeated in Rome and in Leverkusen.

Barcelona is clear in the Spanish league and can concentrate fully on the Champions League, which is a massive advantage for Enrique’s men. They won away to Las Palmas in the weekend (1-2), playing on ‘training mode’. They have now gone 8 and 9 points clear from Atletico and Real Madrid respectively.

Arda Turan is the only case that could change the first 11 if he wasn’t injured.

Possible lineup
Barcelona: Ter Stegen; Dani Alves, Piqué, Mascherano, Alba; Rakitić, Busquets, Iniesta; Messi, Suárez, Neymar.
Out: Rafinha (knee), Arda Turan (suspended)
Misses next match if booked: Piqué

It will not be so easy for Barcelona. Playing away to Arsenal is normally a hard task. I believe Barca will be more focused to make sure they score 1 or 2 goals. So, in case of a draw they will still remain favourites. As of our tip, we will go with the draw at half-time, expecting most of the action to happen in the second half.

Go to bet365 and back the following single bet which would return £36 for a £15 stake (odds in brackets for UK and Europe):

Draw at half time on Arsenal v Barcelona (7/5, 2.40)

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