Barcelona are on the verge of Champions League final after beating Liverpool 3-0 in Nou Camp in the first leg of the semi-final. Luis Suarez opened the scoring against the team he left five years ago, while Lionel Messi scored two late goals to give Liverpool a mountain hill to climb in the second leg.
Liverpool will be stunned by the overwhelming score line because of their impressive display. James Milner was denied a good goal by Barcelona’s goalkeeper while Mohammed Salah hit the post late on.
Liverpool coach, Jurgen Klopp said his side couldn’t play any better and acknowledged that the score line makes it more difficult for Liverpool to qualify for the final.
On the other side of the divide, Barcelona coach, Ernesto Valverde was thrilled with his side’s victory but cautioned that the tie is not over yet, with the bitter taste of last year’s defeat at Roma still fresh in their mind after winning 4 – 2 in the first leg.
Who Is More Likely to Qualify Between the Two Teams?
Liverpool will be counting on their home support to overturn the score line and push through to the final. If they play to their strengths which includes the pace of their forwards, they might turn the tie around. But then, Barcelona is a difficult team to play on any day and they are well experienced in the competition. Furthermore, they have a football genius in Messi who can turn things around when you least expect and considering the fact that Barcelona holds the advantage heading to Anfield, they will be playing with confidence.
And if the first leg is an indicator of what will happen, Barcelona will be content to sit back, soak up the pressure, adapt, close down spaces between Liverpool’s fast attackers, and hit them on the break. Though not as good as their previous teams that won the treble, they get the job done as can be witnessed in the La Liga and the first leg against Liverpool. Their defensive players closed down Liverpool’s forwards giving Lionel Messi the space to operate.
For Liverpool to create an upset at Anfield, they won’t just need to be at their best, they will need their strikers to be clinical in front of goal than the last time out and they will need their defenders to be more aware and prevent Barcelona’s forwards in the eighteen yard box. A little bit of luck, as Jurgen Klopp noted, also need to happen for them.
Barcelona to Come out Tops
A quick look at different casinos and bookmakers show that the odds is to Barcelonas favour, as expected after a 3-0 win at de camp nou. Depending on which bookmaker you put your trust in, the odds might vary so it’s always important to do your research beforehand and there’s a lot of sports betting and casino reviews out there to help you along your way. Is is possible that Liverpool can repeat 2005’s final against Milan? Some fans still believe, as Liverpool are not exactly a walk-over as many people may be tempted to believe at this point. However, it’s very unlikely. If Barcelona can contain Liverpool and play with the same intelligence and experience they showed in the first leg, then they should be smiling at the final whistle in Anfield.
When all is said, the likely deciding factor will be Messi – a force that proved too much for Liverpool in the first leg and will be present when they meet again in the second leg.