Our resident betting expert is predicting Chelsea’s thrilling run in the competition to come to grinding halt against Pep Guardiola’s men in what should be a game featuring plenty of goals in west London.
The three-time Ballon d’Or winner has 14 goals in nine appearances in another sparkling campaign in the Champions League. The 24-year-old has failed to score against Chelsea in six previous meetings, but the Argentine forward will be keen to put that right in west London on Wednesday night. The Tipster is backing Messi to score at 8/13 – and so should you.
Chelsea have been involved in a couple of thrilling encounters in this season’s Champions League, with both sides scoring in six of their 10 games. Similarly, Barcelona have managed to score but also failed to keep a clean sheet on five occasions in Europe. So, the Tipster reckons both sides to score in the first leg at Stamford Bridge is good value at 4/5.
Chelsea’s last four home games in Europe’s elite club competition have produced 16 goals. The London side will be keen to take a lead to Camp Nou, while Barcelona’s 10 games in the Champions League have produced 40 goals. Over 2.5 goals looks an excellent bet in this one at 4/5.
Barcelona have won four out of their last five away games in the Champions League this season – the holders were held once when AC Milan managed to secure a goalless draw at the San Siro in the previous round. With Chelsea having little time to recover from their FA Cup exploits on Sunday evening, Barcelona to win is the value here at 7/10.
Barcelona and Chelsea have shared plenty of heated encounters over the past 12 years in the Champions League. The pair have met four times in the knockout stages, culminating in four red cards. Of these dismissals, two have come at Stamford Bridge, with Eric Abidal sent off in 2009. So, with all that in mind, the Tipster’s long-range punt for this edition is for a red card to be brandished at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday night at 11/4.
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