Saturday, September 26, 2020

Prediction: Barcelona vs Borussia Dortmund

Verdict: Barcelona win and both teams to score

Best Odds: 7/4

Bookmaker: Bet365

In what has all the makings of a matchup that should produce an abundance of chances, top spot in Group F is still up for grabs when Barcelona will welcome Borussia Dortmund to the Nou Camp on Wednesday night.

Barcelona

Starting with the hosts, while Barcelona may have battled from behind to snatch a 2-1 win away at Leganes over the weekend, many around the Nou Camp are still calling on Ernesto Valverde to be removed from his position in the dugout. Continuing to show some glaring inconsistencies since opening the new campaign, the Spanish giants could only muster a 0-0 draw against Slavia Praha in their last European appearance in Catalonia. Already handed defeats against the likes of Levante, Granada, and Athletic Bilbao this season, their continued performances at the back are becoming a huge concern for Valverde. The former European champions have failed to record a clean sheet in any of their last four La Liga matchups on the bounce and they have also recorded just a single domestic clean sheet at the Nou Camp since opening the 2019/2020 campaign. Despite their issues at the back, Barcelona once again find their attacking talisman enjoying another extended purple patch. Five-time Ballon d’Or winner Lionel Messi has bagged nine goals in his last eight matches across all formats.

Team News

Gerard Pique is one of a number of Barcelona defenders who are sidelined for this game, with the centre-back set to serve a one-match ban.

Nelson Semedo and Jordi Alba will miss out through injury, while Clement Lenglet is a major doubt due to a calf problem.

Borussia Dortmund

As for the visitors, while Borussia Dortmund may have pulled off their own dramatic comeback last time out, the German outfit find themselves in an almost identical position to Wednesday’s hosts. While the Black and Yellows may have garbed three second-half goals to snatch a point off of relegation scrappers Paderborn over the weekend, Lucien Favre’s side still appear to be feeling the effects of their 4-0 hammering against Bayern Munich earlier in the month. While BVB may have once again showed their powers of recovery to snatch three points off of Inter Milan in their last European outing, fans in rural Germany have a string of issues over their side’s struggles at the back. Remarkably, Dortmund have now shipped 12 goals in just their last three matchups and it should also be noted that they have failed to win any of their last four matches away from Signal-Iduna-Park.

Team News

Dortmund Head Coach Lucien Favre is expected to make several changes to his side in midweek, it looks like both Julian Brandt and Thorgan Hazard could be recalled to their starting XI.

Key Factors to Consider

  • Barcelona have not lost a Champions League match at the Nou Camp since May 2013.
  • However, Wednesday’s hosts have recorded just a single La Liga clean sheet on home soil this season.
  • Lionel Messi has nine goals in his last eight matches across all competitions.
  • Borussia Dortmund have shipped 12 goals in their last three matchups.
  • The German outfit have also failed to win any of their last four matches on the road.

Conclusion

On paper, this has all the makings of a matchup that should produce an abundance of chances at both ends. While Barcelona might be showing some glaring issues at the back, it is hard to overlook their stellar European record at the Nou Camp. With Borussia Dortmund so publically struggling outside of rural Germany and failing to win any of their last four matches on the road, we’re backing Wednesday’s hosts to come out on top in a lively encounter in midweek.

Verdict: Barcelona win and both teams to score

Best Odds: 7/4

Bookmaker: Bet365

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tom Dunstan


Formerly of The Independent, Tom is a freelance football and boxing journalist from Essex, England. Currently working for three online publications, Tom is a graduate of the University of Falmouth and has spent the last two years writing across Australia, New Zealand and Asia. He can be followed at @IamTomDunstan

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