We are less than a week away from travelling to England to face the Premier League defending Champions Chelsea at the Stamford Bridge in the first Leg of the Round-of-16 stage in the UEFA Champions League 2017-18. At this time, its none other than our future president Gerard Pique who has spoken out that we need to pull our socks up and be all guns blazing for the tie.
Barca have been on excellent form ever since the start of the 2017-18 season and we have lost only 1 competitive game in the league & Copa del Rey combined. However, the form seems to have taken a small dent after two back-to-back draws against Espanyol & Getafe in La Liga. There is nothing really to worry about as far as the top of the table position is concerned while it is indeed worrying to know that these draws have come right before we face Chelsea in the UEFA Champions League.
While speaking to the press, Pique had quite a few things to say about this game and here is what he felt:
- Against Chelsea, Expectations are maximum and we go out as favourites, with a chance to win. I know the atmosphere is positive, very favourable, everything looks good, but I think we have to be more prudent.
- We have to learn from experience, what has happened in recent years and know that one bad day could see you knocked out of the Champions League.
- A bad result against Chelsea could turn the good season we are having into an average season.
- We know where we are, in La Liga and in the cup we’re in a good position, and now we have to do it in the Champions League. That’s why we will play Chelsea with the aim of getting a good result, to try to win to take the first step in this tie.
The point that I agree the most with is that a bad result against Chelsea could turn the good season we are having into an average season. This completely holds true for us as for the kind of form that we have been in, it is expected that we Cules de Barcelona may celebrate yet another treble victory at the end of the season. In case we are complacent against the Blues, these dreams could be hampered as early as in the Round-of-16 stage. More than the trophies, it is a matter of pride and we cannot afford to fail against Chelsea one more time.
What adds to the tension is the La Liga game we play against Eibar away from home and they have been in very good form in the recent past. Eibar have lost only 1 game in the whole of January and they also destroyed Sevilla 5-1 at home a couple of weeks ago. So it is definitely not going to be an easy fixture this weekend. How are we going to manage these two games away from home in a matter 72 hours?
We’ll look more into these details in the match preview coming very soon to you guys, let’s hope for the best!