Tottenham Hotspur will look to get their UEFA Champions League campaign back on track when they host Barcelona for a matchday two fixture at Wembley Stadium in London on Wednesday 3 October 2018, kick-off at 21h00 CAT.
Spurs suffered a heartbreaking 2-1 away loss to Internazionale in their opening Group B match last month. The Premier League side opened the scoring through Christian Eriksen and looked set for a priceless win at the San Siro, until the Nerazzurri’s Mauro Icardi and Matias Vecino struck in the 85th and 90th minutes respectively.
Since that loss, Mauricio Pochettino’s team have rallied strongly in domestic competitions. They first won 2-1 at Brighton & Hove Albion, put an in-form Watford out of the League Cup with a penalty shootout win (after the teams drew 2-2) and beat Huddersfield Town 2-0 away from home this past weekend, with two goals from Harry Kane.
Barcelona, by contrast, opened their Group B campaign with a comfortable 4-0 home win over Dutch champions PSV Eindhoven. Lionel Messi scored a hat-trick and Ousmane Dembele netted the other as the Spanish heavyweights enjoyed a great night which was sullied only by the late sending off of defender Samuel Umtiti – the French centre-back will miss the trip to London due to suspension.
However, the Blaugrana have been in poor form since that emphatic Champions League win. They have recorded two draws and a defeat in their three La Liga matches since then, and the pressure has steadily grown on coach Ernesto Valverde.
Barca were held 1-1 at home by Athletic Bilbao this past weekend, where they needed a late equaliser from Munir El Haddadi to salvage a draw, while last midweek they were outfought and outmuscled by minnows Leganes to lose 2-1.
Spurs will hope that their athleticism and intensity allows them to put Barca under pressure, while the form of Kane gives them hope of a ruthless and powerful attack. Yet the English side cannot underestimate the attacking power of the Liga champions, with Messi their most potent threat.
Tottenham v Barcelona – Head-to-Head, all competitions
N/A – This will be the first competitive meeting of Tottenham and Barcelona.