Competition/Round: 2019-20 Champions League, Group F, Matchweek 2
Barcelona Outs & Doubts: Ansu Fati, Jordi Alba, Samuel Umtiti (out)
Inter Milan Outs & Doubts: Romelu Lukaku (out)
Date/Time: Wednesday, October 2, 2019, 9pm CET (Barcelona), 8pm BST/WAT (UK & Nigeria), 3pm ET, 12pm PT (USA), 12.30am IST (India, Thursday)
Venue: Camp Nou, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain
Referee: Damir Skomina
TV: TNT (USA), BT Sport ESPN (UK), SuperSport 6 (Nigeria), SONY TEN 2 (India), Movistar Liga de Campeones (Spain)
Barca did avoid disaster in their opener against Dortmund. They had been taken to the verge though. If not for the heroics of their goalkeeper, Marc Ander Ter Stegen, the Spanish outfit would have had to bow their heads in German soil.
At a crucial juncture in the tie, the shot-stopper stepped up and calmly did his job against the incoming Marco Reus’s penalty, which in all probability would have resulted in Dortmund registering three points.
Considering that Group F is unanimously tipped to be the toughest, each and every point matter by a whole degree.
With just two qualification spots, and the likes of Inter, Dortmund, and Inter battling it out for the two tickets, race is tipped to get intense in the following match-days.
Ernesto Valverde’s men will have to make the most of this fixture, considering that the venue is Camp Nou. The struggles on the road of his cavalry are well known these days, and teams nowadays are deliberately targeting this weakness.
But for sure the job would not be easy. Antonio Conte’s men have been the best in Italy so far this season. They have even overtaken the mighty Juventus in the points-table.
The arrivals of Alexis Sanchez and Romelu Lukaku have strengthened their attacks, and under the guidance of Conte, they have started to thrive.
With the hosts facing a lot of injuries, it would surely be interesting to see how the fixture would turn out.
Barcelona (4-3-3): Ter Stegen; Semedo, Piqué, Lenglet, Firpo; De Jong, Busquets, Arthur; Pérez, Suárez, Griezmann
Inter (3-5-2): Handanovic; Godín, Skriniar, De Vrij; D’Ambrosio, Barella, Brozovic, Sensi, Asamoah; Lautaro, Alexis
Head To Head
Wednesday’s game will be the 13th competitive meeting between the two sides, with Barcelona currently leading the way on six wins compared to Inter’s two.
This is the second consecutive season in which these two have done battle in the group stage after they met in last year’s competition, where Barcelona took four points from the two games.
One has to go back to a Fairs Cup tie in January 1970 for Inter’s only away win against Barcelona, when the game finished 2-1 to the Italians.
Barcelona vs Inter Milan Prediction
The Spanish champions surely have the home advantage, but they are missing a lot of players. The absence of Lionel Messi, Ousmane Dembele, Ansu Fati, and Jordi Alba will surely be felt. On top of that, their counterparts have been on a roll this season, with them at the top of the Serie A table, registering 100% wins.
As such, count on the guests to avoid a loss this Tuesday.
But still, taking into account the h2h history, and Barca’s dominance at the Nou Camp pitch, a clean sheet for the Italians may be expecting too much.