Athletic Bilbao vs Barcelona
Spain – LaLiga
Date: Saturday, 21 August 2021
Kick-off at 21:00 UK/ 22:00 CET
Venue: Estadio San Mamés.
Barcelona underwent some major changes this summer, but they still appear to be contenders. They started their campaign with a win, and will look to extend this run. Bilbao, who have not been in good form lately, do not seem up for the challenge.
The Catalans had secured a third-place finish the last season, but were in the running for the title till the second to last match-day.
However, they cannot afford to miss out on the title this year – which would make it three seasons in a row, which would be something unheard of in recent history.
They did score the most number of goals of all the teams in the competition in 2020-21. In fact, they had scored 18 more goals than any other squad in the La Liga, and despite the absence of Leo Messi, the frontline seems capable of slotting in goals this year.
The issue that’s been plaguing the five-time European champions has been their defense. They have not yet found an ideal line-up at the back, and are leaking goals in plenty.
In the meantime, Bilbao are going through a rather inconsistent streak, and are letting in goals in huge numbers. On top of that, they also have a poor h2h record against this foe.
Likely, expect a win for Barcelona this weekend.
Athletic Bilbao vs Barcelona: Head-to-head (h2h)
- The latest encounter had ended in a 0-4 win for Ronald Koeman’s men.
- They had won four of the past five meetings.
- Only twice have they kept clean sheets in the past seven encounters.
- The last four clashes on the trot had three or more goals.
Athletic Bilbao vs Barcelona Prediction
Bilbao were held to a goalless draw the last match-day by Elche. In the meantime, the Catalans recorded a 4-2 win at home against Sociedad.
Going on, the Athletic Club were winless in 24 of their past 31 overall matches, and they have a total of two official wins at home since January.
On the other hand, their counterparts had won six of their preceding seven games, and had scored three or more goals in five of their last six fixtures.
Taking into account these stats, as well as previous h2h clashes, expect a win for Barcelona.
However, considering the deplorable state of their defense lately, and particularly in road games, expect them to concede at least twice.