WELCOME TO CAMP NOU!!! The Greatest Stadium on Earth is ready for another memorable European night of football as Barcelona welcome Liverpool for the first leg of the UEFA Champions League semifinal. These are two of the preseason favorites to win it all doing battle for a spot in the Final, and both are exceptional teams who are well equipped to win the tie and go to Madrid. The first leg is crucial for Barça, who need to win at home and avoid conceding a big away goal for the Reds, so join us to follow and comment on what should be an awesome game.
Competition/Round: 2018-19 UEFA Champions League, Semifinal, 1st Leg
Date/Time: Wednesday, May 1, 2019, 9pm CET, 8pm BST/WAT (UK & Nigeria), 3pm ET, 12pm PT (USA), 12.30am IST (India, Thursday)
Venue: Camp Nou, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain
Referee: Björn Kuipers (NED)
HOW TO WATCH, STREAM CHAMPIONS LEAGUE
How to watch on TV: TNT (USA), BT Sport 2 (UK), SuperSport 3 (Nigeria), SONY TEN 2 (India), Movistar Liga de Campeones (Spain), others
How to stream: FuboTV, B/R Live (USA), BT Sport Live (UK), Movistar+ (Spain), others
Barcelona’s meeting with Liverpool at Camp Nou on Wednesday in the Champions League semi-final first leg promises to be a memorable affair.
While ever respectful of their opponents, with Ajax and Tottenham playing the other semi-final, both clubs will feel they have a strong chance of winning the competition.
Certainly, these are the two teams of the remaining four with the richest recent history in the European Cup, with the Catalans having won three of the last 10 editions and Liverpool finalists last year when they lost 3-1 to Real Madrid.
Barcelona, however, has the advantage of having already secured their domestic league title, having done so thanks to a 1-0 win over Levante on Saturday, the unsuppressible Lionel Messi getting the only goal.
By contrast, Liverpool is involved in a thrilling shootout with Manchester City for honors in England, with their latest outing a 5-0 win over Huddersfield Town on Friday.
Despite the Reds fighting on two fronts, Barca boss Ernesto Valverde has predicted a tough match.
“Liverpool are a team with lots of good forwards. They have only lost one game [in the Premier League] this season against City, that shows how good they are,” he said.
“The idea is to win and to stop them from scoring an away goal. Liverpool is a team who latch on to mistakes, so it is important to stop those.
“It’s very psychological the way they play. We saw that against Chelsea the other week [a 2-0 Premier League win at Anfield].
“In the first 15 minutes of each half, they try to smother you, push you and throw everything they can at you.”
Klopp, meanwhile, has made it his mission to stop Messi from claiming a fifth Champions League title.
“Messi said before the start of the season that they wanted to bring back this cup – that sounded already like a threat to me!” he said on Tuesday. “Now we are here, we want to go to the final as well.”
With 46 goals this season, the Argentine poses a unique problem to the English side, as their German boss admitted.
“It is not only about Messi, but it is about Messi of course,” he said. “Can we concentrate on Messi? We should, in certain moments.
“But then they have 10 world-class players around who can decide the game. They have the highest quality team, they are already Spanish champions.”
And the former Dortmund boss appreciates the South American so much that he openly backed him as the world’s standout player at present, surpassing even Cristiano Ronaldo.
“For me, from the players I’ve seen, Messi would be the number one, 100 percent,” he said.
His task now, then, is to find a way not only of stopping the brilliant Argentine but his 10 team-mates, too.
Source: www.barcablaugranes.com, www.goal.com