- Inter Milan need a win to secure progression from Group F
- Barcelona are already through as group winners
- See the odds for Inter Milan vs Barcelona on Tuesday, December 10, 2019 on Matchday 6
Antonio Conte’s Inter Milan are under pressure as Group F heads into Matchday 6. Inter’s Champions League campaign has been imperfect, leaving them with just seven points from their first five matches. With Borussia Dortmund hosting Slavia Prague, the Serie A giants will likely need a victory over Barcelona at San Siro to book a place in the last 16.
Barcelona are locked into top spot in the group despite accumulating only 11 points so far. It’s been an unspectacular campaign for the Catalan club with just seven goals scored. The 3-1 win over Dortmund on Matchday 5 was enough to qualify and avoid the 0-0 draw with Slavia Prague on Matchday 4 coming back to haunt them.
Inter Milan vs Barcelona Odds
|Inter Milan||-0.5, -1 (-122)||-159||Over 3 (-104)|
|Barcelona||+0.5, +1 (+106)||+310||Under 3 (-112)|
Odds taken Dec. 5
Inter to Contain
Inter are a trademark Conte team. The side is built around a back three and the attack relies on quick transition. Few teams in the Champions League have lower average possession than Inter – Conte wants his teams to absorb the opposition’s pressure, sit deep and spring into counter-attacks. The system relies on the forward players – Romelu Lukaku and Lautaro Martinez – being productive. The duo have been, scoring 24 combined so far this season.
Defensively, however, it can be a nervous watch for fans. Inter need to win against Barcelona, but they are unlikely to have a huge amount of possession. Counter-attacks are Inter’s best opportunity to create clear cut chances, though it also means giving Barcelona’s attack a lot of time to try and break them down.
Fresh off winning a sixth Ballon d’Or, Lionel Messi will find a way to create chances, just as he did when Barcelona hosted Inter at Camp Nou. Messi registered an assist and completed 10 dribbles as he found pockets of space in Inter’s defense. Inter are unlikely to keep him quiet.
Inter Milan vs Barcelona – Champions League Stats
|14 yellows, no reds||Cards||14 yellows, no reds|
|11.4||Shots per match||12.8|
|61%||Shots inside the area||56%|
Rotation From Valverde
Potential rotation from Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde is one factor that could be in Inter’s favor. Barcelona have nothing to play for at San Siro, and with La Liga’s title race incredibly tight, Valverde may give some of his starters the night off. That could include Messi.
Even significant rotation isn’t going to make this a walkover for Inter, such is the talent in Barcelona’s squad. Messi’s absence in particular, though, changes the dynamic drastically. Inter have injury issues of their own with Alexis Sanchez and Nicolo Barella sidelined, but crucially have Lukaku, Martinez, Stefan de Vrij and Milan Skriniar fit.
Books heavily favor an Inter victory on Tuesday. Team selection from Valverde will obviously be crucial, and any indication of rotation is something for bettors to keep an eye out for. It’s a shame this match doesn’t mean anything for Barcelona as it could have been a fascinating encounter.
The “Over” could be worth backing here. Inter will have to chase the game unless they get an early lead, and that could lead to a lot of goal scoring opportunities for both teams.
Pick: Over 3 goals
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