PSG vs Barcelona prediction, odds, stats, betting tips, best bets for Champions League quarterfinal first leg – Sporting News

After three years without being drawn together, two sides with significant history meet in the French capital as PSG host Barcelona in the first leg of their Champions League quarterfinal at Parc des Princes on Wednesday.
These two clubs have a history of producing explosive 90-minute matches when they meet, with 24 goals being scored over their last six meetings played in the Champions League knockout stage dating back to 2015. That includes the famous 6-1 thrashing by Barcelona at the Camp Nou in 2017 which turned around a 4-0 first leg deficit.
There’s a slight air of desperation about this match, as both clubs enter with a significant degree of uncertainty in the near future. This competition is Kylian Mbappe’s last shot at bringing his hometown club the Champions League trophy it covets so dearly before departing this coming summer, likely for Barcelona’s chief rival Real Mardrid.
Barca, meanwhile, will see head coach Xavi step aside after this season, and the former Blaugrana midfielder would love to hoist Europe’s most treasured trophy to stick it to the club’s hierarchy which have shoved him aside.
USA: Click here to see the latest odds for PSG vs Barcelona and bet Champions League matches
PSG are heavy home favourites, despite Barcelona showing improved recent form and are getting healthier every week. Goals are expected as well, with the over given a big swing, especially for the first leg of an aggregate European matchup.
There are reasons why both sides can win this match, regardless of where it’s being played. PSG have been beaten at home on numerous occasions in recent Champions League seasons, including by Bayern Munich last year and by Man City in 2021.
Barcelona are on a quality four-game stretch, with wins over Mallorca, Napoli, Atletico Madrid, and Las Palmas by a combined 8-1 scoreline. The victories over Napoli in the Champions League Round of 16 and Atletico Madrid in La Liga were particularly impressive, finishing with efficiency while in matches featuring high stakes.
PSG appeared to be defensively improved as 2024 rolled around, but they have reverted back to their porous ways, conceding to relegation-threatened Clermont Foot last time out while coughing up two first-half goals to Montpellier a few weeks ago to cap off a stretch of four games without a clean sheet. Without Achraf Hakimi on the flank, PSG can be caught.
MORE: Preview Atletico Madrid vs Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League quarterfinals

The most notable bit of team news for PSG is not an injury, but instead the suspension of Achraf Hakimi who earned his third Champions League booking in the second leg against Real Sociedad, thus triggering an accumulation ban. 18-year-old midfielder Warren Zaire-Emery could be a candidate to fill in, but he missed the weekend league match with a thigh injury and may not be available himself. Also absent are Bradley Barcola and Presnel Kimpembe, while Nuno has missed nearly the entire season with hamstring issues and remains unreliable.
The length of Barcelona’s injury list is beginning to subside, but they remain without a host of key players as they sputter to the end of the season. Both young midfield stars Gavi and Pedri have been missing for quite some time, but the latter may return after proving fit enough to train with the squad. The same goes for Frenkie de Jong who has also joined the group after missing a number of weeks with a hamstring injury, and while some reports indicate Andreas Christensen could also be back, it’s tougher to see that coming to pass after he missed time with Achilles issues. Alex Balde is done for the year after undergoing hamstring surgery.
While the conventional wisdom is usually that the first leg of a major European matchup is cagey, these two teams consistently buck that trend. The last three first legs between these two sides in Champions League knockout play have finished 3-1, 4-0, and 4-1.
PSG are exceptionally thin at the back, especially out wide, while Barcelona are getting healthier in midfield, which will help their creativity as Frenkie de Jong and Pedri may return. Meanwhile, Kylian Mbappe was rested against Clermont Foot over the weekend, and still managed to provide a critical assist after coming off the bench, so his impact will be felt against a regular El Clasico opponent in his likely club future.
Barcelona have pieced together their front line this season, thanks to injuries and inconsistencies, but the most reliable forward has been Raphinha, who is enjoying his best campaign at Barcelona yet. The Brazilian scored his team’s only goal in the 1-0 win over Las Palmas on the weekend, and picked up an assist in the 3-0 romp over Atletico Madrid before the international break, plus one in the second leg win over Napoli to progress in the Champions League.
While 35-year-old Robert Lewandowski slogs through his worst season in nearly a decade, Raphinha has been there to lift Barcelona up on numerous occasions.
Additionally, PSG will be without the suspended Achraf Hakimi, while Nordi Mukiele was injured on the weekend, meaning they are dangerously thin at full-back. With Raphinha looking to terrorize 17-year-old Yoram Zague, he could be in a position to provide the goods for Barcelona, while boasting extremely valuable odds.
When given enough of the ball, PSG will load up on corners as one of the most vertical clubs in all of Europe. They racked up nine in the second leg against Real Sociedad en route to a 2-0 victory in the Round of 16, and amassed an insane 17 corners against Clermont Foot last weekend while efforting in vain to find a winner.
Barcelona don’t give up corners on a regular basis, but that’s largely a product of their possessional strength against lesser opponents. In the recent 3-0 win over Atletico Madrid, their opponents collected seven corners despite not being an overwhelmingly vertical attacking side, and Napoli drew the same total in the first leg of their Round of 16 matchup amidst a 1-1 draw.
This enormous Champions League matchup will be televised in the United States on CBS, with the rights-holders placing the massive tilt on a network television channel. CBS is available to stream on Fubo, and the match will also be streamed on CBS Sports’ dedicated platform Paramount+, as every Champions League match across the season is.
There is also a Spanish-language broadcast on TUDN and UniMas, both of which are available to stream on Fubo.
In the UK, the match will be televised domestically on TNT Sports 1, and streamed on the broadcaster’s dedicated streaming service discovery+. In Canada, the exclusive broadcast provider for the UEFA Champions League is DAZN, who will stream this as they do every game across this year’s UCL competition.
Kyle Bonn is a soccer content producer for The Sporting News.







Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *