European giants, Barcelona, face Shakhtar Donetsk in back to back UEFA Champions League matches this week, where they will look to defeat the Ukraine side once again. The Spanish champions won 2-1 last time out, but Xavi will be disappointed that his team didn’t take advantage of their final third opportunities.
Marino Pusic’s team have found it difficult in the Champions League this season, which may be due to their attacking approach. Shakhtar have scored in every match this season and are the only side to have scored against Barca in Europe, but three of their five goals came against struggling Antwerp. At the back, they have suffered seven goals and they may need to take a more defensive approach on Tuesday.
Domestically, Shakhtar haven’t been at their best and they sit in third place, two points behind top with a game in hand. That said, they’ve been victorious in seven of their 11 matches and only suffered defeat once. Furthermore, they have won 75% of their home matches, but their only loss did come in one of those four matches.
Barcelona have a 100% win record in the Champions League, winning all three of their Group H matches. Xavi’s team are yet to be tested and they’ve conceded the joint lowest number of goals in the competition (1). Yet apart from their 5-0 victory over Antwerp, they haven’t been completely convincing, narrowly beating Porto 1-0 and Shakhtar 2-1.
In La Liga, Barca have won eight matches in 12 attempts, but they have only been beat once, which was in the El Clasico against Real Madrid. Their goals scored and goals conceded average is impressive, standing at 2 and 1 respectively. Furthermore, they are unbeaten on the road this campaign.
Barcelona beat an extremely tough Real Sociedad 1-0 this weekend and they will go into this tie full of confidence. They have an endless amount of quality and they should make it four from four in the Champions League.
The final prediction is Shakhtar Donetsk 0-2 Barcelona.