23 July 2019
Barcelona and Chelsea will face-off at the Saitama Stadium for a friendly meeting that will see the Catalans kicking off their pre-season.
Barcelona ended last season with a disappointing 2-1 loss to Valencia in the Copa del Rey final, which was a culmination of their run of poor form. The reigning La Liga holders have secured just one triumph in the final five games of the 2018-19 campaign (W1, D1, L3), conceding two or more goals in four of those matches. But, if the Catalans win here, it will probably be to nil, as eight of their last nine victories saw them beating their opponents without conceding a goal. Surprisingly, only four of Barcelona’s previous eight games have featured over 2.5 goals, with just two of them seeing both teams score.
Meanwhile, it will be Franck Lampard’s first serious test as the new Chelsea boss, although the English manager struggled to motivate his squad at the beginning of their preparations. The Blues have clinched just one triumph in three matches this summer (W1, D1, L1), as they go into this clash off the back of a frustrating 1-0 defeat to Kawasaki Frontale. Also, two of those matches have featured under 2.5 goals, while one of them saw both teams score. But, the Pensioners can be encouraged by their recent H2H record against Barcelona, having lost just one of their previous nine H2H meetings (W3, D5, L1).
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