Champions League preview: Shakhtar Donetsk – Barcelona
The Blaugrana won the first-leg of this quarter-final tie 5-1 at Camp Nou and will be confident of progressing to the last four…
By Subhankar Mondal
|Shakhtar Donetsk: Pyatov; Kobin, Ischenko, Rakitskiy, Shevchuk; Mkhitaryan, Hubschman; D. Costa, Jadson, Willian; Luiz Adriano
|Barcelona: Pinto; Adriano, Pique, Milito, Maxwell; Xavi, Busquets, Keita; Messi, Villa, Afellay
||DID YOU KNOW?|
- Barcelona’s 5-1 defeat of Shakhtar Donetsk in the first-leg of their quarter-final tie at Camp Nou last week was their ninth successive home victory in UEFA club competitions, equalling a club record.
- The Spanish champions are the top scorers in the Champions League this season with 23 goals. Only arch-rivals and potential semi-final opponents Real Madrid have scored as many.
- Forward Lionel Messi is the competition’s leading scorer with eight goals. However, Inter striker Samuel Eto’o and Bayern Munich’s Mario Gomez have netted the same amount.
- Messi also has the highest number of shots on goal (21), a record equalled by Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo.
- Midfielder Andres Iniesta is suspended for the match in Ukraine on Tuesday evening and striker Bojan Krkic is injured.
- If Shakhtar Donetsk manage to overturn their 5-1 deficit, then they will become only the fourth club to overhaul a four-goal disadvantage from the first-leg in UEFA club competitions.
- Shakhtar have won just once against Spanish opposition at home, suffering two defeats and drawing three times.
- The Miners have committed 160 fouls and suffered 141 – both a record, and more than any team left in the competition.
- Defender Dmytro Chygrynskiy became the first Ukrainian to play for Barcelona when he featured for the Blaugrana in 2009-10.
- The Ukrainian champions have a 100 per cent home record in this season’s Champions League and are unbeaten in 12 European games in Donetsk.
- Razvan Raţ is suspended for this encounter while Darijo Srna is out injured.
Messi on the slide | Argentine was impressive again last week
April 6, 2011: Barcelona 5-1 Shakhtar Donetsk
Barcelona were in control of the match right from the start with Andres Iniesta breaking the deadlock after just two minutes. Daniel Alves doubled the Blaugrana’s lead after the half-hour mark and minutes into the second-half Gerard Pique increased the home side’s tally. Yaroslav Rakitskiy reduced the deficit a minute before the hour mark but Seydou Keita and Xavi added their names on the scoresheet. It eventually finished 5-1 to Barcelona.
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Top 3 Predictions
Shakhtar Donetsk 1-3 FC Barcelona
- 14.58 %
Shakhtar Donetsk 1-2 FC Barcelona
- 13 %
Shakhtar Donetsk 0-2 FC Barcelona
- 9.14 %
|UEFA Champions League (UCL)||Apr 12, 2011||Shakhtar Donetsk 0 - FC Barcelona 1|
|UEFA Champions League (UCL)||Apr 6, 2011||FC Barcelona 5 - Shakhtar Donetsk 1|
|UEFA Super Cup (SC)||Aug 28, 2009||FC Barcelona 1 - Shakhtar Donetsk 0|
|UEFA Champions League (UCL)||Dec 9, 2008||FC Barcelona 2 - Shakhtar Donetsk 3|
|UEFA Champions League (UCL)||Oct 1, 2008||Shakhtar Donetsk 1 - FC Barcelona 2|
|Feb 27, 2014||Shakhtar Donetsk 1 - FC Viktoria Plzeň 2||EL|
|Feb 20, 2014||FC Viktoria Plzeň 1 - Shakhtar Donetsk 1||EL|
|Dec 10, 2013||Man Utd. 1 - Shakhtar Donetsk 0||UCL|
|Nov 27, 2013||Shakhtar Donetsk 4 - Real Sociedad 0||UCL|
|Nov 5, 2013||Shakhtar Donetsk 0 - Bayer 04 Leverkusen 0||UCL|
|13||José Pinto Colorado||Goalkeeper|
|-||Andreu Fontàs Prat||Defender|
Willian showed some of his lovely touches against Barcelona at Camp Nou last week but was eventually overrun and overpowered. However, he remains one of the most creative players in the Shakhtar team and will hope to create problems for the Blaugrana defence.
David Villa has not been in the best of form this season but has been among the goals for the Blaugrana. However, the 29-year-old has not found the target for Barcelona since late February and will be hoping to groove himself back into form given their impending clashes with Real Madrid.
Barcelona’s away record in the Champions League this season is disappointing but having won the first-leg comprehensively last week, Pep Guardiola’s team will know that they have done enough to progress to the last four. A win for Shakhtar at home is not entirely out of the question and with Guardiola likely to field some of his fringe players, the Ukrainians could eke out a narrow win.