Kick-off: 2000, 08/08/2020
Stadium: Camp Nou
TV: BT Sport
Barcelona have stuttered a bit this season but past history suggests they should account for Napoli in the Champions League at Camp Nou.
The Catalan giants have drawn away in the first leg of a European tie on 26 occasions, but eventually went on to progress in 21 of those encounters.
With their opponents being even more out of sorts, we like 3/2 for the hosts to be ahead at half-time and full-time for our first Barcelona vs Napoli prediction.
A Look At Barcelona’s Betting Odds
Barcelona fell behind to a clinical Dries Mertens strike from the edge of the area in the opening leg at Stadio San Paolo and looked in trouble at the break.
However, they stepped up a gear in the second half and levelled through a well-worked Antoine Griezmann goal on 57 minutes.
Barca’s form has been patchy since the restart, dropping points in four of 11 La Liga games to finish five behind Real Madrid at the top of the table.
A 2-1 home loss to Osasuna and a couple of 2-2 draws with Atletico Madrid and Celta Vigo highlighted issues in midfield and defence.
Having to cope without Sergio Busquets and Arturo Vidal here due to suspension, plus the injured Samuel Umtiti, only enhances those problems.
Lionel Messi recently hit out at Barca’s lack of sparkle, stating: “If we want to win the Champions League, we’ll have to improve massively.”
The Catalan giants did beat Inter Milan 2-1 and Borussia Dortmund 3-1 here in the group stage, though, and the delay has allowed Luis Suarez to return from injury.
A Look At Napoli’s Betting Odds
Napoli are unbeaten in this competition and notably took four points off Liverpool during the group stage.
However, Gli Azzurri traditionally do not travel well in Europe and have even struggled on the road in Serie A this season.
Gennaro Gattuso initially inspired an upturn in fortunes after replacing Carlo Ancelotti, including a Coppa Italia final triumph over Juventus on penalties.
But three defeats and just one win in their last five away league games contributed to a lowly seventh-place finish.
Napoli were soundly beaten at Atalanta and Inter Milan, suggesting they currently lack the quality to compete at this level.
Key defender Kostas Manolas is out and even a strong forward line featuring the likes of Dries Mertens and Lorenzo Insigne is unlikely to save them.
Let’s add 11/1 for the hosts to prevail 3-1 to our Barcelona vs Napoli betting tips.
NAPOLI 1-1 BARCELONA – Dries Mertens + Antoine Griezmann
Previous head-to-head: N/A
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