On Wednesday night, one of the most intriguing games of gameweek two in the Champions League takes place, as Barcelona host Internazionale at the Nou Camp. Both sides are looking for their wins of the season in Europe’s elite competition.
Barcelona (Odds of 8/13 for victory)
The home has made an inconsistent start to the new campaign by their very high standards. However, it looks like the Catalan giants are starting to kick back into gear after consecutive wins in La Liga.
Ernesto Valverde’s side drew 0-0 with Dortmund in their opening group game, which was not a terrible result considering BVB started the campaign as second-favourites to qualify from this group. Barcelona, of course, are the favourites to win Group F and also one of the favourites to win the competition.
Unusually, for the home side, they have failed to win in two European games, although they have now lost just once in their last 13 Champions League matches. Barcelona are known for their attacking football, but it’s at the other end of the pitch where they have excelled in this competition of late, keeping clean sheets in four of their last five matches.
The Catalan giants are a formidable force on home soil in the Champions League, as they are unbeaten at the Nou Camp in 32 outings, 29 victories in the process. However, the Blaugrana are less effective without superstar Lionel Messi, who has been ruled out through injury in recent weeks. The Argentinian is doubtful for this clash.
Inter (Odds of 17/4 for victory)
The Nerazzurri have made a very bright start to life under former Chelsea head coach Antonio Conte. In fact, the men from Milan have picked up maximum points in Serie A.
The only slight blemish on their copybook this season was a 1-1 draw at Slavia Prague in their only Champions League game. The result was disappointing for the visitors, as Slavia are seen as the weakest team in the group.
Inter will be looking to improve their recent record in the Champions League, as the Nerazzurri have now failed to win in their last five games in Europe’s elite competition. The visitors have also won just three of their last 11 matches in the Champions League.
The Italian side has also won just once in five away games in the Champions League. Their past trips to Barcelona have proven less than fruitful too, as they have suffered defeat in their last five matches at the Nou Camp while failing to even register a goal. The last time the two teams met was in the group of stages of the competition last season when Barcelona recorded a 2-0 win.[reviewTableLarge ids=”620,639,642″ title=”Best betting sites to place bet on this game are:”]
This game is vital for both sides. The home side are just finding their feet this season, while Inter are heading into the clash in good spirits. This clash is a test for Barcelona’s fragile form of late. If it was at the Giuseppe Meazza it may be a different story, but on home soil, the Catalan giants are a major force.
It is likely to be a close encounter, with Barcelona just edging the victory. We are backing the home win at 8/11. The under 2.5 goals looks a tempting one, especially if Lionel Messi misses out for the Blaugrana. You can back the under 2.5 goals at odds of 13/10.
Verdict: Back the home win at odds of 8/11 and/or the over 2.5 goals at odds of 13/10.
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Will either side pick up their first Champions League win of the campaign in gameweek two?