Barcelona, West Ham, Napoli: Who're the favourites to win the Europa League?

Barcelona - the 2021/22 Europa League champions?

Barcelona's 2021/22 Champions League campaign has got off to the worst possible start.

The Blaugrana's first game in the competition this season pitted them against Bayern Munich and they were predictably thrashed by the German side 3-0 at Camp Nou.

No one really gave Barcelona much of a chance in that fixture, but far more was expected of Ronald Koeman's side in their away match versus Benfica on Wednesday evening.

However, the Catalan outfit were absolutely dire once again and were beaten by a scoreline of 3-0 for the second consecutive Champions League match.

A brace from young star Darwin Nunez and a goal from Rafa Silva sealed the win for Benfica and that margin of victory certainly didn't flatter the Lisbon-based team either.

Barcelona's woeful showing in Portugal - which included an Eric Garcia red card - now means they're pretty likely to drop down into the Europa League, especially given that they still have to play Bayern away.

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The supercomputer over at FiveThirtyEight is immensely confident that the Blaugrana will be playing in Europe's second-tier tournament later this season, so much so that it's now made them favourites to win the whole thing.

Barcelona's 9% chance of success in the Europa League means they sit ahead of Napoli (8%), Real Sociedad (6%), Bayer Leverkusen (6%), Real Betis (5%) and West Ham United (5%).

The second-highest placed team currently playing in the Champions League is RB Leipzig at 5%, with FC Porto and Atletico Madrid joint-third on 3%.

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The favourites to win the 2021/22 Europa League

The Europa League favourites

Europa League 2021/22: Fixtures, Draw, Results, Odds, Scores And Everything You Need To Know

Given Barcelona's struggles both on and off the pitch in recent months, winning the Europa League would represent a pretty fine achievement in our books.

Yes, we've all been used to seeing them dominating the Champions League over the past decade or so, but the current team is so far away from being able to do that it's laughable.

To put it simply, they're a Europa League-level team at the moment and securing victory in that competition is the best fans can hope for in 2021/22.

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