Champions League Round of 16: FC Barcelona – Napoli

The Spanish champions against the Italian champions would normally be a top of the top clash but both sides have been struggling this season and are unlikely to repeat last year´s feature. Napoli are currently in 7th place quite far behind the Champions League spots while Barcelona are in 3rd place behind revelation Girona and Real Madrid. 

FC Barcelona Team News

Barcelona have picked up quite some injuries in recent weeks with big problems at the midfield and left back. With Gavi, Pedri and Frenkie de Jong all out it will be a puzzle for Xavi to pick a midfield against Napoli. A lot of hope will be put on the shoulders of Gundogan to inspire the catalan side to reach the quarter final. Also at left back there are some problems with Balde out for sure while Marcos Alonso remains doubtful ahead of the clash. 

Napoli Team News

Napoli have a fully fit squad ahead of the game in Barcelona. The only player set to miss the game is Zielinski as the Polish midfield player has not featured since announcing his move to Internazionale at the end of the season. The way the move got set up, with Zielinski refusing to extend his contract and thus leaving on a free transfer has prompted Napoli to leave the player out of the squad for the rest of the season. 

FC Barcelona Form

After some rocky results in January, Barcelona are actually undefeated in 8 games since. Despite the form has not been great with a few draws and some struggling wins in the process. What will give the Spanish side confidence is the fact that they have not conceded a goal in the last 3 games, a feature they have not produced before this season. If they can keep a clean sheet again this Tuesday they are in good shape to go through to the quarter final. 

Napoli Form

Napoli continue to struggle this season, although their last defeat came 6 games ago away against AC Milan, they only managed to win 2 of their last 6 games and 3 of their last 10 games. However, since the first game of the tie, the Napolitans have seen a slight increase in their form. After a 1-1 draw against Cagliari, Napoli managed to pick up 7 points in 3 matches against Torino, Juventus and Sassuolo, with especially the 1-6 victory against Sassuolo and the win against Juventus as signs of improvement. Will it be enough though to upset Barcelona tonight?

What do the stats say?

  • Napoli have not lost a game since 11-02
  • last Barcelona-Napoli ended 1-1
  • Napoli have scored in their last 6 matches

Our verdict

This one seems a hard one to predict. Based on the name you would say Barcelona would go through but their injuries and recent form are a big source of concern. Napoli however have not really shown any better form as of late on the other side making it a very tough match to predict. However, since Barcelona miss their entire midfield and Napoli seem to have picked up the pace a little bit, a Napoli double chance at 2.1 seems good value.

Bet?: Yes

Napoli Double Chance  2.1

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