Charlie Nicholas states his prediction for Arsenal v Barcelona

Charlie Nicholas says Barcelona to get a result in the first leg at the Emirates on Tuesday night

The Sport Review staff
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Charlie Nicholas says he expects Barcelona to secure a positive result against Arsenal in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 clash on Tuesday night.

The Gunners, who were held to a goalless draw with Championship side Hull City at home in the FA Cup on Saturday, have only managed to win one of their last seven meetings with the La Liga side in the Champions League.

Arsenal know they need to take a risk and go for it

Charlie Nicholas

Robin van Persie and Andrey Arshavin cancelled out David Villa’s opener to secure a 2-1 win at the Emirates Stadium before Barcelona were 3-1 winners at Camp Nou in 2011.

While Nicholas is predicting Arsenal to score two goals against Barcelona in a 2-2 draw on Tuesday night, the former Gunners playmaker urged Arsene Wenger to take a gamble and go for a win despite Barcelona’s quality.

“You get to the stage where you wonder how on earth you even begin to plan to stop them. Do you put two holding midfielders in? Well that means you’re never going to attack and the one thing we know is that Barca do leak goals,” Nicholas told Sky Sports.

“I think Arsenal know they need to take a risk and go for it. What would be a comfortable result to take to the Camp Nou? Is 3-0 even enough to make them favourites to go through?

“Olivier Giroud has to have a right go at Gerard Pique and Javier Mascherano, Alexis Sanchez will be up for playing his old club and it’s another chance for Mesut Ozil to show he can shine among the stars. However, it’s Petr Cech that I’m really hoping will show just how important he is.

“Whatever happens I will enjoy it in a strange way as Barcelona are just the best team on the planet right now and a pleasure to watch every time they walk on a football pitch.

“I’m expecting them to get a result which will leave them as huge favourites.”

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Arsenal are looking to reach the Champions League quarter-finals for the first time since 2010.

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