Barcelona vs. Inter Milan Camp Nou, Barcelona, Spain 2:45 PM EST Tuesday November 23, 2009
by Jason Green at Predictem.com
Match Odds: Barcelona are the favorites in this big match posted at 1.75 with Inter Milan as the underdogs posted at 5.00 with a draw at 3.50.
The moneyline for this match has Barcelona at -153 with Inter Milan at +400 and a draw at +240.
Over/Under: 2.5 goals
In a match up of 2 of the best teams in Europe defending Champions League winners Barcelona hosts Inter Milan in what is sure to be a stellar match. Inter was lucky in their last Champions League match against Dynamo Kiev scoring 2 goals in the last 10 minutes to take the lead in Group F. Inter has 6 points with Barcelona right behind them with 5 points. The winner of this match should make it out of the group while the loser will have to win their last match to make to the knock out phase and they may have to get help.
In the first match in Milan these teams played to a 0-0 draw and each has not played great since in group play. After 4 matches all 4 teams in Group F have only 1 win. Inter is the only team not to lose in group play, as they have 1 win and 3 draws. Barcelona seemed to have an easy road to get out of the group, but were shocked losing to Rubin Kazan at Camp Nou.
Things are the same for Milan, as they currently lead Italy Series A, but their Champions League future is in doubt. For the past few years they have won their domestic league, but have been a major disappointment in the Champions League.
If Inter wins this match and Rubin Kazan beat Dynamo Kiev in the other Group F match on Tuesday night Barcelona will be out of the Champions League. However, history says that will not happen since the Spanish Giants have never lost 2 European competition matchs in a row at home.
Barcelona Recent Form:
11/21/2009 Atletico Madrid 1 Barcelona 1 (La Liga)
11/10/2009 Barcelona 5 Cultural Leonesa 0 (Copa del Rey)
11/7/2009 Barcelona 4 Real Mallorca 2 (La Liga)
11/4/2009 Rubin Kazan 0 Barcelona 0 (Champions League)
10/31/2009 Osasuna 1 Barcelona 1 (La Liga)
Inter Milan Recent Form:
11/21/2009 Bologna 1 Inter Milan 3 (Serie A)
11/8/2009 Inter Milan 1 AS Roma 1 (Serie A)
11/4/2009 Dynamo Kiev 1 Barcelona 2 (Champions League)
11/1/2009 Livorno 0 Inter Milan 2 (Serie A)
10/29/2009 Inter Milan 5 Palermo 3 (Serie A)
Even though star Barcelona striker Lionel Messi has not been ruled out for this important clash he was inured in Barca’s last match and may be hampered against Inter. Zlatan Ibrahimovic should return after training without any pain. Yaya Toure and Eric Abidalare out for this match die to illness and Dmytro Chygrynskiy is not eligible and will not play.
Inter Milan’s Wesley Sneijder will return and will play in this match after getting injured when playing for Holland last week. Davide Santon will not play in this match due to a knee injury, but other than that Inter is relatively healthy and they have a full squad.
Barcelona’s Thierry Henry has dealt with a lot of bad press this last week because of his infamous hand-ball in the World Cup qualifying match against Ireland and he will need to be full strength in this match and give Barca some offense, especially if Messi does not play.
Barcelona’s defense will have to play well in this match, as Inter has a dangerous offense that has scored 32 goals in Serie A play this season.
Inter’s defense has also been stellar this season only conceding 11 goals in Serie A.
Barcelona’s offense has been struggling, as if you take out the 5 goals they scored against a weak team in Copa del Rey they have only scored 6 goals in their last 4 matchs.
Henry, Ibrahimovic, and Messi, if he can go, have to put pressure on the solid Inter Milan defense and attack the goal all match long.
Inter has a very strong midfield and if they can control that area they have a good chance to win this match.
Inter G Julio Csar has played great all season and he will have to make some big saves in this match against Barcelona and their attacking style.
Inter’s Samuel Eto’o felt like he was pushed out of Barcelona so he may have a little grudge towards his old team.
Jason’s Pick: Obviously, I think the draw is the smart call in this match, but I think Inter will come out strong and shock the defending champions winning a huge match at Camp Nou and seriously jeopardizing Barcelona’s chance of making it to the Champions League knockout phase.