Barcelona 20-5-5, Athletic Bilbao 10-12-8
6/23/20 4 pm
Over 2.5 (-175), Under 2.5 (+137) Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
Barcelona is hosting Athletic Bilbao at Camp Nou in a derby match of round 31 of Spanish LaLiga.
For the time being, Barcelona is at the top of the standings with 65 points, but they are playing very slow and inconsistent soccer. The biggest problem for Barcelona is that when Messi isn’t having a good day, neither does Barcelona, and that happened in their latest LaLiga match against Sevilla on the road. Sure, Barcelona had more possession, 64%, but only 4 shots on target, 9 corner kicks, and 88% of the correct passes. Barcelona didn’t use any of the possession they had and they barely created any decent chances. Sevilla has actually had better chances, but Ter Stegen has saved Barcelona with a few outstanding saves. This match ended in a 0-0 draw. Offensively, Barcelona is the best in LaLiga with 69 scored goals, and the good news is that their defense is also improving. Barcelona has conceded 31 goals. The next few games will be crucial for Barcelona because if they don’t win, Real Madrid could take over the top, and it’s quite possible they will not lose it again. Messi has scored 21 goals and added 14 assists for Barcelona this season, while Suarez has 11 goals, but he is yet to score since the restart. Dembele is still injured and it’s questionable if he will play again this season, while De Jong will be off the pitch for about a week because of the foot injury. After firing Valverde as the head coach, Barcelona hired Setien, but he didn’t move Barcelona in a good direction and I think the best thing would be to part ways at the end of the season because I don’t see Barcelona winning the Champions League while playing like this.
Athletic has been playing well since the restart and they haven’t lost any of their last three games. During this stretch, Athletic has scored a goal in every game, while conceding 3 goals in 2 games. With 42 points, Athletic is in 9th place in the standings and they have one of the best defenses in the league. Athletic Bilbao has conceded only 26 goals. Offensively, Athletic hasn’t bee that good with only 33 scored goals in 30 games. Raul Garcia has scored 10 goals for Athletic Bilbao this season, while Williams added 6 goals. Berchiche is the only injured player for Athletic Bilbao. In their latest LaLiga match against Betis at home, Athletic has had 43% of ball possession, 3 shots on goal, 11 corner kicks, and 76% of the correct passes. Athletic Bilbao has won this match 1-0 by an early goal from Martinez. I’ve mentioned this a few times before, but Athletic Bilbao is signing only the players that have the connection to the region of Basque where they are from, and I’m sure there are great players there, but in my opinion, that is not enough for a bigger result.
Barcelona hasn’t won against Bilbao in their last 4 games, and Barcelona also lost in the reverse fixture earlier this season. While playing at home, Barcelona hasn’t lost to Bilbao in their last 22 games, and they are still unbeaten at home this season with a record of 14-1-0. I don’t think Barcelona can go 2 games in a row without scoring a goal, and they could certainly use a win here to stay ahead of Real Madrid.