Celtic v Barcelona
Strip away the emotion, the heartbreak and the memories from the Nou Camp two weeks ago and you are left with a football match concerning two very different teams. Celtic are punching above their weight to simply be competing in the Champions League, while Barcelona are seasoned regulars who are expected to comfortably win every game that they play with the exception of matches against Real Madrid. Whatever way you look at this fixture, you should consider it from a footballing perspective that is free from preferences for either side, emotions or history. You should consider this match based on footballing credentials and form.
Barcelona’s away form this season reads as played 5, won 5, scored 19 and conceded 8. Celtic’s home form this season reads as played 5, won 3, drawn 1, lost 1, scored 6 and conceded 4. It is fair to say that the Spanish League is far stronger than that of Scotland and it is this type of information that we should be looking to as a guide. Barca ‘s ruthlessness in front of goal has more than made up for any defensive frailties. When these two sides met at the Nou Camp two weeks ago, the hosts registered 26 shots on goal with 16 of these on target compared to the away side’s 4 shots with 2 on target. I am not saying that Celtic were lucky because they did defend with determination in this tie, but all of the figures and stats point to the fact that there is a strong possibility that Celtic could suffer a heavy defeat in the return leg.
Bet Recommendation: Barcelona (-1) @ 4/5 (1.80) with Setantabet.com
Anzhi v Liverpool
Anzhi will be looking to exact revenge on a Liverpool side that are still struggling to produce consistent performances. I feel that Brendan Rodgers will not want to risk playing Suarez against the Russians and he may not be the only one to miss out. That could be the difference between Liverpool and the Russians who would fancy their chances against any Reds side regardless. Anzhi have produced good results of late and their home form is particularly strong. It reads played 8, won 7, drawn 1, scored 20 and conceded 9. This is a game that Liverpool definitely don’t need with a trip to Chelsea looming on Sunday. I would advise anybody having a bet to take the price early before details of a likely weakened Liverpool team are released.
Bet Recommendation: Back Anzhi to win @ 5/6 (1.83) with Setantabet.com
Crystal Palace v Ipswich
Palace sit 3rd in the table and the Tractor Boys are bottom having won for the first time in 11 league matches last week, defeating Birmingham 2-1. The Eagles have won twice in their last two matches, beating Blackburn 2-0 and Leicester 2-1. Glen Murray is the clubs top scorer and he has been in excellent form of late. Murray now has 10 goals from 11 games, including 2 against Blackburn, albeit one was from the penalty spot. There is no reason to oppose Palace here and I am surprised to see them available at such an attractive price. I believe they should be priced at around 4/11 to win this one.
Bet Recommendation: Crystal Palace to win @ 10/11 (1.91) with Setantabet.com