Zahir |  Mon 17/10/2016 - 23:29 EDT

Champions League Picks: Barcelona vs Manchester City

Champions League Picks: Barcelona vs Manchester City
Book Wednesday afternoon off work. Hopefully the Blue Jays will be playing game 5, and if they are you get to warm up for the main course with Prime Rib in the Champions League. Pep Guardiola makes his second return to the Camp Nou when his out of form Man City side face their toughest test to date...
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Friday 04 August

FC Barcelona @ Gimnastic

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All good teams go through their rough patches. What is troubling for Man City is that their rough patch coincides with some fairly big fixtures. Wednesday they have to visit the Camp Nou and face group C leaders Barcelona. Winless now in 3 games, if they lose midweek Man City will be 5 points behind Luis Enrique’s men.

Barcelona vs Man City odds on William Hill

Barcelona vs Man City odds on William Hill

After Barcelona had their own rough patch early in the season, this last 2 weeks went perfectly. Not only did everyone who left on International duty return fully fit, but they got to wrap Lionel Messi in cotton so he could be ready for this game.

Barcelona vs Manchester City Prediction

Pep is trying to build Barcelona 2.0 at Man City. This Wednesday he faces the original version.

BET BARCELONA @-175 AT WILLIAM HILL. There are certain things that Manchester City are not built to do. One of them is defending for long periods. However, that is precisely the task that they face when they come up against a fully fit Barcelona side. Manchester City have shown a tendency to concede goals even when their opponents have 1/3 of the ball. When they met Tottenham two weeks ago, they were ripped to shreds by a team that presses intelligently and passes precisely. A few days earlier Celtic FC drew them in a 3-3 slugfest in Celtic; the same Celtic that Barcelona dusted 7-0.

Rather than adapt to the different challenges that Celtic and Tottenham posed, Pep kept his tactics the same. Perhaps that’s the right approach at home, but you can’t expect to have the majority of possession against Barcelona, not in their arena. It just doesn’t happen. He has a great team that can grow into something unique. But Barcelona are the unique entity already; a team with a high football IQ accompanied by 3 of the world’s best players.

Historically, the blueprint to beat Barcelona is to have the will power to defend for a full 90 minutes and not get discouraged even if you can’t touch the ball for what can be minutes at a time. Does that sound like Man City?

Even if Pep changed him team and style to defend for the majority of the match what previous evidence is there to suggest that this could work?

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competitions Away Score Home Money Line
November 2016 (1)
Wed 30 R4 L1 Barcelona 1 - 1 Hercules -714 +1600 Odds
December 2016 (1)
Wed 21 R4 L2 Hercules 0 - 7 Barcelona * +3300 -1667 Odds
January 2017 (4)
Thu 5 Barcelona 1 - 2 Athletic Bilbao -227 +550 Odds
Wed 11 Athletic Bilbao 1 - 3 Barcelona * +1600 -769 Odds
Thu 19 Barcelona 1 - 0 Real Sociedad -175 +500 Odds
Thu 26 Real Sociedad 2 - 5 Barcelona * +1213 -455 Odds
February 2017 (2)
Wed 1 Barcelona 2 - 1 Atletico Madrid +150 +190 Odds
Tue 7 Atletico Madrid 1 - 1 Barcelona * +412 -143 Odds
May 2017 (1)
Sat 27 Final Alaves 1 - 3 Barcelona +1600 -588 Odds
July 2017 (3)
Sat 22 MD29 Barcelona 2 - 1 Juventus -125 +320 Odds
Wed 26 MD30 Man Utd 0 - 1 Barcelona +280 -125 Odds
Sat 29 MD30 Barcelona 3 - 2 Real Madrid +120 +250
August 2017 (6)
Fri 4 Barcelona 14:00 Gimnastic -500 +850
Mon 7 Chapecoense AF 14:30 Barcelona
Sun 13 Real Madrid 16:00 Barcelona +275 +100 Odds
Wed 16 Barcelona 17:00 Real Madrid
Sun 20 Betis 14:15 Barcelona +2000 -769 Odds
Sat 26 Barcelona 12:15 Alaves
September 2017 (4)
Sun 10 Espanyol 14:00 Barcelona
Sun 17 Barcelona 14:00 Getafe
Wed 20 Eibar 14:00 Barcelona
Sun 24 Barcelona 14:00 Girona
October 2017 (4)
Sun 1 Las Palmas 14:00 Barcelona
Sun 15 Barcelona 14:00 Atletico Madrid
Sun 22 Malaga 14:00 Barcelona
Sun 29 Barcelona 15:00 Athletic Bilbao
November 2017 (3)
Sun 5 Sevilla 14:00 Barcelona
Sun 19 Barcelona 14:00 Leganes
Sun 26 Barcelona 14:00 Valencia
December 2017 (4)
Sun 3 Celta Vigo 14:00 Barcelona
Sun 10 Barcelona 14:00 Villarreal
Sun 17 Depor. 14:00 Barcelona
Wed 20 Barcelona 14:00 Real Madrid
January 2018 (4)
Sun 7 Levante 14:00 Barcelona
Sun 14 Barcelona 14:00 Real Sociedad
Sun 21 Barcelona 14:00 Betis
Sun 28 Alaves 14:00 Barcelona
February 2018 (5)
Sun 4 Barcelona 14:00 Espanyol
Sun 11 Getafe 14:00 Barcelona
Sun 18 Barcelona 14:00 Eibar
Sun 25 Girona 14:00 Barcelona
Wed 28 Barcelona 14:00 Las Palmas
March 2018 (3)
Sun 4 Atletico Madrid 14:00 Barcelona
Sun 11 Barcelona 15:00 Malaga
Sun 18 Athletic Bilbao 15:00 Barcelona
April 2018 (6)
Sun 1 Barcelona 14:00 Sevilla
Sun 8 Leganes 14:00 Barcelona
Sun 15 Valencia 14:00 Barcelona
Wed 18 Barcelona 14:00 Celta Vigo
Sun 22 Villarreal 14:00 Barcelona
Sun 29 Barcelona 14:00 Depor.
May 2018 (3)
Sun 6 Real Madrid 14:00 Barcelona
Sun 13 Barcelona 14:00 Levante
Sun 20 Real Sociedad 14:00 Barcelona

Pep’s last visit to the Camp Nou…

Was with Bayern Munich in the Champions League Semifinal in May of 2015. After keeping them off the scoreboard for the first 75 minutes, Barcelona wore down the Bayern back line and exploded for 3 late goals. The craziest thing about that game was that Pep decided to man mark the front three of Messi, Suarez and Neymar. The back line of Boateng, Benatia and Rafinha were literally shadowing MSN for the majority of the first half, until it became clear that this was suicidal.

But Pep understood the desperation of the situation even if he didn’t have the pieces to address the problem. It is a reality that he will realize once again in a few days. His Bayern Munich side were a lot better equipped to deal with this threat than his current Man City side is. Other than Vincent Kompany who just returned from injury, you can’t label any of their defenders world class. The likes of Aguero, David Silva, and Fernandinho have all had to face Barcelona in the Champions League and never had a chance.

Now Claudio Bravo gets to see life from the other side as well. Man City’s one ace up their sleeve may be that no player will know the shooting tendencies of Barcelona better than their ex net minder. But even that doesn’t appear to be enough.

For up to date soccer picks and live in game bets you can follow me on twitter @zahir_gilani

Category : Picks and Parlays

Tag : Barça , Barcelona , City , Lionel Messi , Manchester City , Pep Guardiola , Soccer

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