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Barcelona cut for Champions League success after clinical win

| 19.02.2014

Barcelona’s 2-0 victory in their Champions League last 16 first-leg tie against Manchester City has seen their odds cut from 5/1 to 10/3 to claim European football’s biggest prize this season.

A first-half Lionel Messi penalty and a last-minute Dani Alves effort did the damage on a night where Gerardo Martino’s side laid down a marker to the rest of their continental rivals.

Bayern Munich remain the 13/5 favourites to lift the European Cup as they prepare to take on Arsenal but the Bavarian club’s boss Pep Guardiola will be wary of the potential challenge posed by his former employers.

Barcelona kept City at bay for large periods of their encounter at the Etihad, maintaining control of the game in a performance that expertly displayed all of the hallmarks of their recent success.

And once defender Martin Demichelis had scythed down Lionel Messi to concede a penalty and receive his marching orders the result was never in doubt.

Messi duly dispatched his effort and Dani Alves’ late hammer blow ensured the visitors take a comfortable lead to the Nou Camp with Ladbrokes offering a huge 12/1 for the Citizens to qualify for the quarter-finals.

By contrast, Barca are an eye-watering 1/50 to ensure their progression having beaten an English club away from home for the first time in six attempts.

Despite being a bad night for the Sky Blues, Ladbrokes customers were left raising a glass to Lionel Messi after he’d put Barcelona ahead.

The bookmaker refunded losing bets on the Correct Score, First Goalscorer and Scorecast markets after Messi opened the scoring in Manchester.

Ladbrokes are also refunding the same markets if Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil scores ANYTIME in their upcoming clash with Bayern.

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All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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William Geldart

William contributed to a number of online football blogs before finally finding his pot of gold at the end of the rainbow alongside the rest of the Ladbrokes News team. Now indulging passions for football, horse racing, greyhounds, boxing and political betting. Supports Wycombe Wanderers and can be spotted at various lower league and non-league grounds across the country.