24 June 2020
Barcelona entertain Athletic Club at the Camp Nou in a ‘must-win’ La Liga (LL) affair this midweek. A low-scoring contest is definitely on the cards, given that each of their previous six competitive H2Hs has featured under 2.5 goals, with Barcelona drawing a blank in the last three.
A goalless 0-0 away draw with Sevilla last time out brought Barcelona’s three-game winning LL run to a halt and has allowed Real Madrid to leapfrog the reigning holders, although both sides sit level on points ahead of this round. However, the Catalan giants have now kept a clean sheet in five of their last six LL outings (W4, D1, L1). In turn, Quique Setien’s men have shut out their opponents in four of six LL home games since the turn of 2020 (W6), conceding precisely once per match in the other two. As a result, the Blaugrana remain one of three sides yet to taste home defeat this season (W14, D1), with eight of their 14 LL home wins yielding a margin of at least three goals.
Meanwhile, the visitors have racked up five consecutive league games without a loss ahead of this trip (W3, D2) and can rely upon their three-game unbeaten run in LL H2Hs (W1, D2) to maintain their good form. But, Athletic’s huge problems away from home have seen them secure only one win from six LL road trips since the calendar flipped (D3, L2). Interestingly, though, each of those six matches has seen both teams score, with the last four producing over 2.5 goals, too. However, it will be a daunting prospect for the Basque-based outfit to turn their fortunes around here, considering that they’ve failed to pick up a league win at the Camp Nou since 2001 (D3, L14).
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