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Barcelona vs Shakhtar – Grounds for optimism for Ukrainians

| 06.04.2011

Although Barcelona should win the first leg of their Champions League quarter final with Shakhtar, it may prove unwise to totally rule out the visitors for a number of reasons.

Match Odds

Barcelona’s betting odds are 2/9 to beat Shakhtar and this is unsurprising given the strength of their home form in Europe in recent seasons.

A victory over Shakhtar would extend Barcelona’s winning run at the Nou Camp in the Champions League to nine games, while they have managed 12 goals in their four victories this season.

However, Shakhtar’s record against Barcelona in their latest meetings has been pretty good, both winning two of their last four clashes.

Meanwhile, Shakhtar’s two defeats have been to a golden goal in the European Super Cup and to two late goals from Lionel Messi in the group stages of the competition in 2008.

Furthermore, Shakhtar won on their last visit to the Nou Camp in the same year, when scoring with all of their three shots on target.

But perhaps the most telling statistic is that in each of the last seven seasons, the team that has knocked Arsenal out of the Champions League has gone on to lose their next knockout match, which works in favour of the Ukrainian champions.

Shakhtar are 12/1 in the Champions League betting to beat Barcelona in their first Champions League quarter final, while it is 5/1 that the result ends all square.

Total Goals

With Barcelona and Shakhtar both not shy of scoring goals, it may be foolish to predict that their showdown at the Nou Camp is liable to be a low-scoring affair.

Therefore, 1/2 looks decent value that the first leg of the quarter final witnesses over 2.5 goals scored.

A £20 stake on Barcelona beating Shakhtar 2-1 would return £160. New customers can sign up here to take advantage of free bets totalling up to £60.

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Author

Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.