Barcelona are on the verge of reaching the Champions League final for the first time since 2015.
The Blaugrana hold a 3-0 lead at the halfway point of their semi-final tie against Liverpool.
They now have a 93 per cent chance of making the final, per FiveThirtyEight.com.
Anfield is certainly not an easy stadium to go to; there’s no doubt that the Liverpool fans are going to be very, very loud.
Yet the position that Ernesto Valverde’s side have left themselves in, they shouldn’t really be throwing their lead away.
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Lionel Messi, who scored a brace in the first leg, was rested for Saturday’s La Liga game against Celta Vigo, ensuring he’s ready to go.
And Luis Suarez wouldn’t mind scoring in front of the stadium he enjoyed many great moments playing in.
Barcelona's plan at Anfield
So, Barcelona have the upper-hand.
And according to the Spanish media, they’re not planning on waiting around.
Barcelona are going to try to score an early away goal to effectively end the tie as a contest.
If the Blaugrana score an away goal, Liverpool will need to score five goals to remain in with a chance.
So they are going to play aggressively early on, trying to score early on to leave Liverpool with little chance of a comeback.
Per the Daily Mail, publication AS write: “Barca's dressing room considers in Liverpool to achieve the path to the final without suffering.”
The translation suggests Valverde will set his team up to score an early goal, then relax into the game and defend astutely.
Sport write: “1 gol en Anfield,” while Mundo Deportivo explain: ‘La tactica de Anfield.”
Barcelona’s plan isn’t without its risks.
Liverpool probably won’t expect to be under pressure early on but they have pace on the counter-attack and, if they can keep Barcelona at bay, will surely have an early opportunity to score.
And an early Liverpool goal will get Anfield rocking and change the entire complexity of the match.
What a game we have in store.News Now - Sport News