Barcelona vs Celtic: Preview and Prediction

Barcelona vs Celtic:
International Champions Cup,
Date: Saturday, July 30, 2016
Kick-off: 18:00 UK,
Venue: Aviva Stadium (Dublin).

Spanish La Liga Champions Barcelona will start the ball rolling in the International Champions Cup campaign against Scotland giants Celtic on Saturday at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin.

Barcelona won the 2015/16 La Liga title with 91 points after keenly followed by bitter rivals Real Madrid. But they missed out on the UEFA Champions League glory after defeated by Atletico Madrid in the quarter-finals on 3-2 goal aggregate. However, they were able to scoop the Copa Del Rey by the close of the season.

The defending Scottish Champions Celtic lost their first International Champions Cup match on Saturday. The lost to English Premier League title holders Leicester City 5-6 on penalties, after drawing 1-1 at full time. They would like to get their first win in the tournament when coming against Barcelona, but they have to deal with an important Champions League fixture the coming Wednesday.

Form Guide

Barcelona are still unbeaten in their last five games with five straight clean sheets in all competitions. Luis Enrinque’s side have been very prolific in front of goal scoring 18 goals in these five undefeated outings.

Celtic hoops last five games have seen two lost, two draws and one draw. They been a bit goal-shy with just six goals scored and concedes three goals during the period.

Barcelona vs Celtic: Head-to-Head Statistics

Barcelona and Celtic have involved in ten games in all competitions since 11th May 2004 to December 11, 2013. The Catalans won in six, scored 17 and allowed just nine goals against Celtic.

While Celtic performance against Barcelona have been poor. The Scottish outfit have just two wins and two draws as positives to show. The one performance that stand out during the period is the 2-1 win at Celtic Park on 7th November 2012 during the group stages of 2012/13 UEFA Champions League.

Barcelona: Team News

New recruits Lucas Digne and Samuel Umtiti alongside senior players like Messi, Luis Suarez, Arda Turan and Mascherano have all been included in the squad to the International Champions Cup tournament.

Barcelona: Predicted Line-up (4-3-3)

Masip – Vidal, Mathieu, Umtiti, Digne – Turan, D. Suarez, Samper – Messi, Suarez, Munir.

Celtic: Team News

The Bhoys have an in-experience side with youngsters like Amstrong and O’Connell set to start on Saturday evening. While the new arrivals – Dembele and veteran center-back Kolo Toure are also expected to get an extended run out.

Celtic: Predicted Line-up (4-4-2)

Gordon – Lustig, Armstrong, O’Connell, Janko- McGregor, Brown, Izaguirre, Ciftci – Grafiths, Dembele.

Barcelona vs Celtic: Prediction

History of matches between these two clubs show that Barcelona are well above Celtic. Moreover Luis Enrinque’s team have the quality to win games, players like Messi and Suarez alone on any given day could be game changers.

Celtic have a young squad which have not found their mojo yet under the new management of Brendan Rodgers. Also their recent struggles in Champions League qualification matches is an understatement.

On paper stats and boot-for-boot player match, Barcelona are far ahead of Celtic and they must win this fairly easy.

I expect a flurry of goals and the game could end with a score line like 4-2 at the end of 90 minutes.

Barcelona vs Celtic: Prediction

  1. Over 1.5 goals at HT.
  2. Both Teams to Score.