* All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widgets, while odds in copy are accurate at time of publishing but subject to change.
With a 1-4 aggregate scoreline in favour of PSG here you’d expect them to sail through to the next round. But, both sides have a long history of making an absolute pig’s ear of golden opportunities in the knockout stages of the Champions League.
Indeed, that has to be the reason why Barcelona’s odds to win are quite low. Let’s go through the stats and form to find a value-heavy Bet Builder.
Wednesday 20:00 – PSG v Barcelona
BT Sport 3
Compare those Barcelona odds to win over 90 minutes to the odds for them to Qualify for the Next Round and it’s just a massive difference. But, Barcelona can still take hope here, PSG beat them 4-0 just over four years ago and Barca ripped them to pieces in the home leg of the tie – eventually putting six goals past them.
Obviously, these teams are full of goals, when you have players like Kylian Mbappe, Neymar, Lionel Messi and Antoine Griezzmann in your starting XIs, goals aren’t usually the problem, leaky defences and inflated egos are. Anyway, there’s an interesting stat here for both teams here.
PSG always start off their matches on the front foot in the Champions League and have scored 14 first half goals over their nine most previous home Champions League matches. Barcelona have scored a total of seven opening period goals over their last nine away matches in the competition. Although, it would only be fair to say that they scored a first half goal in five of those nine matches.
The onus will be on the away side to draw first blood here, but the home side have shown time and again that they refuse to sit back and allow teams to get at them.
As time edges towards full time here Barcelona are going to get more and more desperate for chances, they’ll be attacking more when they’re in possession and this is obviously going to lead to opportunities.
Missed chances tend to result in either goals kicks for the defending team or corners for the attacking team. With Barcelona averaging just over six corners per away game in La Liga this season, this bet looks pretty good based on the stats.
You’d think we were favouring the away team to do the business here. Well not quite. Lionel Messi has a great record against the Parisian side, he’s faced them on nine occasions so far, scoring five times. Almost all of Barcelona’s attacks come through Messi and, of course, with him on penalties and freekicks he’s obviously the favourite for Barcelona to Score Anytime.
Mbappe is also a decent shout here, but should Neymar pass his fitness test he probably won’t see as much of the ball as he would if the Brazilan remains sidelined. That’s why we’re going with the Argentina captain here.
This has all the making of a classic. PSG are 4-1 up from the first leg as you’re well aware. They’ve choked before and there’s no doubt they’ll choke again at some time in the future. The same thing can be levelled at Barcelona, they’ve pulled off some incredible victories from the jaws of defeat over the years, but they’ve also shot themselves on a few occasions as well.
Four out of the last five meetings between the sides have seen Over 3.5 goals occurring and two saw Over 4.5 goals. With so much talent on the pitch and so much to pay for we’re backing that trend to continue.
Both Teams to Score in the First Half
Over 4.5 Barcelona Corners
Lionel Messi to Score Anytime
Over 4.5 Goals
* A Bet Builder on these four best bets pays at approximately 11/1 with Paddy Power.
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