Barcelona vs. Napoli 8/8/20 UEFA Champions League Soccer Pick and Prediction
Napoli at Barcelona
UEFA Champions League Soccer: Saturday, August 8, 2020 at 3:00 PM EST (Camp Nou)
The Line: Barcelona -170 / Draw +330 / Napoli +450 -- O/U: 3 Click Here for the Latest Odds
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Barcelona plays host to Napoli in a UEFA Champions League round of 16 matchup from Camp Nou on Saturday afternoon.
Barcelona comes into this match having finished the La Liga campaign in 2nd, their 12th straight finish as either champions or runners-up in Spain’s top flight, finishing five points behind Real Madrid at the top of the La Liga table. Barcelona started well after the restart, but draws to Sevilla, Celta Vigo and Atletico Madrid as well as a shock loss to Osasuna at home took Barcelona out of the race as Real Madrid hoisted the trophy. Lionel Messi led Barcelona with 30 goals and 24 assists across all competitions while Luis Suarez had 19 goals and 11 assists for the Catalans. Marce-Andre ter Stegen saw the bulk of the workload in goal for Barcelona, conceding 0.93 goals per 90 minutes with 17 clean sheets in 44 appearances across all competitions this past season.
Napoli on the other hand, comes into this one having earned a spot in the Europa League group stage this past season, finishing in 7th but earning a Europa League spot after winning the Coppa Italia, beating Juventus on penalties in the final. Napoli finished the year on 62 points, four points behind AC Milan in 6th. Dries Mertens led Napoli in the goal-scoring department with 16 goals across all competitions while Arkadiusz Milik had 14 goals and Lorenzo Insigne had 12 goals. Mertens, Insigne and Jose Callejon shared the tea-high in the assists department with 8 assists on the year. Alex Meret saw the bulk of the work in the Champions League matches, with 0.67 goals conceded per 90 minutes and 3 clean sheets in 6 Champions League matches this season.
Napoli is more than capable of coming in and stealing a game from a banged up Barcelona team who are missing their fair share of players due to injury. However, even without fans, Camp Nou is an advantage in itself for Barca as the Catalans haven’t lost at home in Champions League play since 2013. Barcelona’s been the topic of conversation for a lot of critics lately, and I think that Messi, Suarez and co. will want to shut them all up with a convincing performance here. I just think that Barcelona gets the job done here, so I’ll side with Barcelona and combine it with the over 1.5 goals as my bet for this match as I could easily see a 2-0 or 2-1 win for Barca.