Barcelona vs PSG

New year, new stage, new ball, same objectives. 

The UEFA Champions League returns in 2021 with the knockout rounds starting with a European classic.

Barcelona host last season’s runners-up Paris Saint-Germain at the Camp Nou for the first leg of their last 16 tie.

It promises to be an intriguing game four years after that famous Remontada when Barca pulled off one of the greatest comebacks in the competition’s history.

Betway Nigeria

Both sides have a strong history having met eight times in the last eight seasons averaging four goals per match. The game is booked to end with over 3.5 goals at 2.24 odds with our betting partners.

Barcelona’s might versus PSG’s emergence

Barca have knocked out PSG in each of their last three UCL knockout meetings and the Parisians have to do something that hasn’t been done in 26 years. They aim to become the first French club to defeat Barcelona at Camp Nou at 3.36 odds.

PSG are looking to deny Barcelona’s record 14th consecutive quarterfinal qualification and they would have to improve on only one quarterfinal appearance in the last four seasons. A home first leg win is backed at 2.02 on Wazobet.

Barcelona have turned their season around and are third on the La Liga standings. (Getty Images)

The French champions must be wary of the Catalans’ threat at dead balls as seven of Barca’s 16 goals this season (44%) have come from setpieces.

PSG have been heavily linked with Messi as his contract expires this summer and Ronald Koeman has had to warn the various PSG players off public speculation about an opposition player.

The Dutchman would be keen to exert his team’s dominance in his first UCL knockout game as Barca boss, especially as Neymar, Ángel Di María and Marco Veratti are set to miss out.

Ousmane Dembélé has overcome his physical problems this season and has started three of the last four La Liga games. He has three goals and two assists in four UCL appearances this season and will look to impress with his 3.75 odds to score.

His compatriot Antoine Griezmann has two yellow cards in his last seven Champions League Camp Nou appearances, more than goal involvements (one), and is tipped for a booking in a tantalizing encounter.

Star man clutch?

Kylian Mbappe
PSG need a big performance from Mbappe over two legs.

The French side are without Neymar who is also a doubt for the second leg which puts extra importance on Kylian Mbappé who has scored only once in his nine UCL knockout games for PSG. However, He has four goals and two assists in Mauricio Pochettino’s eight Ligue 1 games so far and is their most lethal weapon at 6.68 to score.

While Pochettino would be looking to engineer a first knockout win for PSG without their Brazilian superstar since he joined the club. He must also stop Lionel Messi who is 4.37 to score first.

This is a regular Champions League fixture that is set to take a new look with the new era of both managers. Would it take a new outcome or more of the same?

Put your money where your mouth is


Bolu Alabi-Hundeyin

Chief Editor of the Football Castle, Bolu Alabi-Hundeyin is a football junkie and writer of the beautiful game.

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