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Barcelona a generous price to win first leg of cup clash with Valencia

| 01.02.2012

It is not very often that Barcelona are 8/13 to win a game of football unless they are playing Real Madrid and so punters may want to get stuck into them claiming victory in the first leg of their Copa Del Rey semi final with Valencia.

Part of the reason for his potentially profitable price could be because Barcelona’s away form in La Liga this season has been below par, losing to Getafe and dropping further points against the likes of Real Sociedad and relegation-threatened Villarreal.

They also drew in their trip to Valencia when requiring a late Cesc Fabregas equaliser.

However, they have triumphed in all three of their fixtures on the road in the Copa Del Rey, which includes a 2-1 victory at the Bernebau over Real Madrid.

Also in their favour is that Unai Emery is still to defeat them as manager from his time at firstly Almeria and now Valencia, with the winless run reaching seven games at his current club prior to the semi final.

But Valencia do have the cup pedigree to reach the final at the expense of Pep Guardiola’s team and the last time that Barcelona beat Los Che over a two-legged tie was back in 1998.

Valencia have progressed in the four meetings since, which includes a Champions League semi final and two showdowns in the Copa Del Rey.

Meanwhile, Barcelona have a raft of injuries to contend with, especially in the attacking positions as David Villa, Pedro, Andres Iniesta and Ibrahim Afellay are all definitely out.

Valencia’s odds are 4/1 to beat Barcelona, but as they are likely to set up with a formation not to lose, 3/1 could be worth considering that the first leg ends in a draw.

With Barcelona short of attacking options, Lionel Messi stands out even more as the logical first goalscorer at 3/1 and will remember hitting a 1-0 winner at the Mestalla in La Liga towards the end of last season.



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.