Tuesday 11th December 2018

Event of the day: Barcelona vs Tottenham Hotspur

Our event of the day is the crucial Champions League tie between Barcelona and Tottenham at the Camp Nou. Tottenham go into this final group game knowing they need to match Inter Milan’s result against PSV in order to progress to the knockout stages. Their Champions League season appeared to be over after Tottenham picked up just one point from their first three group games, however after two wins at Wembley they are right back in contention and find themselves level on points with qualification rivals Inter Milan. What could work in Spurs’ favour is the fact that tonight’s opponents have already qualified from Group B, meaning the result in this game will have no bearing on their progression. As a result, coach Ernesto Valverde could be tempted to give the periphery players a chance to prove their worth, resting his first team stars in preparation for their upcoming games. However, Spurs will be facing an in-form Barca side who go into this one on the back of a four-game winning streak.
However the visitors can also boast a tremendous recent record after winning eight of their last nine games in all competitions, with their only loss coming at the hands of north London rivals Arsenal. Mauricio Pochettino will be hopeful of repeating last year’s feat by reaching the last 16 once more, but will be aware of just how daunting the task of potentially needing to win at the Camp Nou is. When the two sides met at Wembley earlier in the competition, the home side made several defensive errors which gifted Lionel Messi and co. all three points. They met the Argentine star in untouchable form that night but there is a chance that Messi could be rested for this return tie. It is all set-up for a thrilling night of European football.
Honourable mentions around the globe go to the NBA clash between the LA Clippers and the Toronto Raptors at the Staples Center in LA. The Clippers have generally been strong at home this term, losing just two games on home soil. However, the Raptors have proven themselves to be one of the best road teams this year and have won ten times away from home, more than any other side in the league. Elsewhere in the Champions League, Liverpool welcome Group C leaders Napoli to Anfield, knowing anything but a win will see them crash out of this year’s competition. There is international cricket in Bangladesh as the hosts face the West Indies in the 2nd ODI. In the snooker, Day 2 of the Scottish Open gets underway but two-time champion Ronnie O’Sullivan will not participate in this year’s edition after he withdrew following his UK Championship win last week.
Whatever you’re watching, enjoy!
Photos by UEFA

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