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Played
November 6, 2013 7:45 PM GMT
Camp Nou — Barcelona
Referee:‬ M. Mažić‎
Attendance:‬ 80517‎
 
30′ (PG) Messi
Piqué 45′ (OG)
40′ Busquets
 
83′ Messi
 

Barcelona-AC Milan Preview: Catalans look to extend 22-match unbeaten streak

The Rossoneri are in search of their first away win of 2013-14 against the favoured Blaugrana, who have lost once in their last 23 European home games

By James Willoughby

Barcelona will aim to extend their 22-match unbeaten streak when they host AC Milan at Camp Nou on Wednesday.

The Catalan giants have made an excellent start to the season, topping La Liga with 11 wins from 12 fixtures, while also leading the way in Champions League Group H with seven points from three games. 

New head coach Gerardo Martino has not lost a match since taking over at Barcelona - the club's last defeat came to Bayern Munich in May - and they would move five points clear of Milan with a win on Wednesday.

Their recent form is in spite of a goal drought from Lionel Messi, who has scored just once, during the 1-1 draw at San Siro in last month’s reverse fixture with Milan, in his last five matches.

Messi has still scored four goals in three Champions League fixtures this term, with the Argentine netting a hat-trick on matchday one against Ajax.

That was his fourth Champions League treble - a feat no other player has achieved - and his 24th hat-trick for the Blaugrana.

Barcelona have lost just one of their last 23 Champions League fixtures at home - that being the 3-0 reverse against Bayern in last season's semi-finals - while they have won 21 in a row at home in La Liga.

Tweet Hernan Crespo!
Send your questions to AC Milan & Inter star Hernan Crespo via @Heineken using #sharethesofa on Wednesday evening

While Messi has not been among the goals in recent times, Alexis Sanchez has helped to fill the void, netting five in as many matches.

Jonathan dos Santos suffered knee ligament damage last month and has been sidelined until next year, while Jordi Alba (hamstring), Ibrahim Afellay (thigh) and Isaac Cuenca (knee) are all long-term absentees.

Milan - who sit second in Group H with five points from three matches - have not won on their last five visits to Spain and suffered a 2-0 defeat to Fiorentina on Saturday, a result that saw them slide to 11th in Serie A.

Massimiliano Allegri's side are already 19 points behind table-toppers Roma and a repeat of last season's third-placed finish looks unlikely, although they also started poorly in 2012-13.

The Rossoneri have not won an away match this season, losing three and drawing four, and all signs point towards that trend continuing on Wednesday.

Defender Mattia De Sciglio (knee) made his first appearance since August last month, but attackers Stephan El Shaarawy (thigh) and Giampaolo Pazzini (knee) will be sidelined for some time.

Another defender, Daniele Bonera, is back in training following a knee injury, but is unlikely to feature in Spain.



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UEFA Champions League ‎(UCL)‎ Oct 22, 2013 AC Milan 1 - FC Barcelona 1
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UEFA Champions League ‎(UCL)‎ Mar 12, 2013 FC Barcelona 4 - AC Milan 0
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UEFA Champions League ‎(UCL)‎ Feb 20, 2013 AC Milan 2 - FC Barcelona 0
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1Víctor ValdésGoalkeeper
3PiquéDefender
21AdrianoDefender
22Daniel AlvesDefender
6XaviMidfielder
8Andrés Iniesta LujánMidfielder
14Javier MascheranoMidfielder
16BusquetsMidfielder
9Alexis SánchezStriker
10MessiStriker
11NeymarStriker
13José Pinto ColoradoGoalkeeper
2MontoyaDefender
15BartraDefender
4Cesc FàbregasMidfielder
17Alex SongMidfielder
7PedroStriker
20TelloStriker
32Christian AbbiatiGoalkeeper
5Philippe MexesDefender
17Cristian ZapataDefender
20Ignazio AbateDefender
4Sulley MuntariMidfielder
16Andrea PoliMidfielder
18Riccardo MontolivoMidfielder
28Urby EmanuelsonMidfielder
34Nigel De JongMidfielder
7RobinhoStriker
22KakáMidfielder
35Ferdinando CoppolaGoalkeeper
21Kevin Constant Midfielder
81Cristian ZaccardoDefender
25Daniele BoneraDefender
14Valter BirsaMidfielder
32Alessandro MatriStriker
45Mario BalotelliStriker
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Group A Matchday 4
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Top Scorers
Player   Goals Penalties
C. Ronaldo C. Ronaldo
Striker
Real Madrid
14 1
Zlatan Ibrahimovic Zlatan Ibrahimovic
Striker
PSG
10 1
Messi Messi
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Barcelona
8 2
Diego Costa Diego Costa
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Atl. Madrid
7 0
Sergio Agüero Sergio Agüero
Striker
Manchester City
6 2