A shorthanded Barcelona travels to Athletic Club hoping to build on their six-point lead atop the La Liga standings.
Star forward Robert Lewandowski has been absent with a hamstring injury for the past few weeks, and the Barcelona attack has suffered, scoring just a single goal in each of the five games he’s missed against-top flight clubs since the start of 2023.
Yet Lewandowski could be back for this match, having returned to training. But his status is unclear status for this weekend’s match. His return would be a big boost, but Barcelona might have to make do without their Polish talisman for one more match.
Athletic have clung to their top-half standing in ninth place, but are four points back of Villarreal (sixth) and have a lot of ground to make up if they wish to secure a European place next season.
Athletic Club vs Barcelona match facts
- Date: Sunday, March 12
- Kickoff Time: 4 p.m. ET / 8 p.m. GMT / 7 a.m. AEDT (Mon, Mar. 13)
- Location: San Mames Stadium (Bilbao, Spain)
- Official: Jesus Gil Manzano
- Last meeting: Barcelona 4-0 Athletic Club (Oct. 23, 2022 | La Liga)
Athletic Club vs Barcelona prediction, odds
- Moneyline lean: Barcelona (+120)
- Against the spread lean (handicap): Barcelona -0.5 (+105)
- Score prediction: Athletic Club 0-1 Barcelona
The total goals under selection was blitzed in this match (-155 or 4/6), and rightly so. Barcelona cannot score without Robert Lewandowski, and without the additional services of Pedri and Ousmane Dembele as well, they have been especially poor in the final third.
Yet their opponents have been exceedingly bad in front of goal, able to pad their stats against bottom tier Spanish clubs but coming up empty on numerous occasions against top-half sides. Of their 28 goals scored this season, 22 have come against clubs currently in the bottom six.
Barcelona have won all five matches that Lewandowski has missed this calendar year by a 1-0 scoreline. They could make it a perfect six-for-six by winning via a 1-0 scoreline without Robert Lewandowski in 2023.
to score Y / N
|-115 / -125||-120 / -130||4/5, 10/11||1.87 / 1.85||1.94 / 1.87|
|Over / Under
|+110 / -155||+114 / -152||11/10, 4/6||2.15 / 1.67||2.21 / 1.70|
Athletic Club vs Barcelona: best bet
- Pick: Barcelona to win to nil
- Odds: +240 (BetMGM)
Betting a team to win to zero always has its dangers — we picked Manchester United to beat Real Betis in shutout fashion just days ago, and the Red Devils dominated proceedings just as expected, but a fluky Ayoze Perez goal ruined an otherwise on-point bet.
Yet the odds on this are just too good to pass up. Barcelona are masters defensively this season at the domestic level, and Athletic Club struggle to score goals against competent sides. Ronald Araujo is suspended for the match, but Barcelona have won plenty of matches with Andreas Christensen, Marcos Alonso, and Jules Kounde at centre-back. The return of over 2/1 odds are well worth expecting the Blaugrana to pull out a hard-fought victory.
Athletic vs Barcelona prop bet
- Pick: Raphinha anytime goal scorer
- Odds: +310 (BetMGM)
Yes, Robert Lewandowski may return for this game, but Raphinha has been a consistent presence in front of goal. The Brazilian bagged three goals in a four-game stretch through February when Lewandowski was healthy and playing, and scored the winner last time out against Valencia.
Raphinha hasn’t been great by the eye test, but he always seems to crop up when needed most. His expected goals per shot tally of 0.23 over the past six games is absolutely outstanding, and he can have a game-winning moment in matches when he otherwise looks poor. At over 3/1 odds, this is an especially good play if Lewandowski sits, but is still viable even if the star striker takes the field.
Athletic Club vs Barcelona live stream, TV channel
MORE: Watch Premier League matches live with fuboTV in USA
|USA||ESPN Deportes||fuboTV, ESPN+|
|UK||La Liga TV||Viaplay Sports 1|
|New Zealand||Sky Sport 7 beIN Sports||beIN Sports Connect|
|Hong Kong||—||M Plus Live, Now Sports 2, beIN Sports Connect|
beIN Sports Connect, sooka
|Singapore||beIN Sports||StarHub TV+, beIN Sports Connect|
UK: This match will be broadcast live in the UK through Viaplay Sports and La Liga TV.
USA: This match will be televised in Spanish on ESPN Deportes, making it also available to stream on fuboTV, which offers a free trial for new users. A stream in English will be made available on ESPN+ for subscribers.
Canada: Every La Liga game this season is live streaming exclusively via TSN in Canada, with select matches televised on one of the network’s channels.
Australia: Fans in Australia can stream every match live and on demand on Optus Sport.
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