There isn’t a whole lot of mystery as to what Tottenham Hotspur needs to do to avoid dropping out of the Champions League today. It’s a straightforward enough task. The problem is that it’s just exceedingly difficult.
The job: beat Barcelona at Camp Nou.
According to the Guardian today, since 2008 Barcelona have played 306 home matches. They’ve lost only 17. Four of those losses came to Real Madrid. It just doesn’t happen very often.
There is hope, though — Barcelona have already qualified for the next round, so their motivation is somewhat questionable. In addition, Barca have already lost at home once this season, to Real Betis in early November, so it can happen. Ernesto Valverde is expected to name a side that is at least moderately rotated, though that rotation may not include Lionel Messi. But still: it’s Barca. At home. In the Champions League. Nervous yet?
Spurs know that if they want to be sure of advancing, they must win (though they can still advance if they better Inter Milan’s results at home vs. PSV). That means they will pull no punches today. Third string right back Kyle Walker-Peters plays out of necessity, but so will all of Spurs’ best players. They will try and go straight at Barcelona and accomplish what might just be the biggest win in Mauricio Pochettino’s tenure.
How to Watch
Time/Date: Tuesday, December 11, 2018 | 3 p.m. ET, 8 p.m. BST
Location: Camp Nou, Barcelona, Spain
Match Official: Milorad Mažić (SRB)
TV: BT Sport 3 (United Kingdom), TNT (USA-English), Univision (USA-Spanish), DAZN (Canada), Optus (Australia), other countries at www.livesoccertv.com
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