Barcelona vs. Valencia La Liga Soccer Picks

Nikki Adams

Wednesday, April 15, 2015 11:44 PM GMT

Can Valencia put another dent in Barcelona's La Liga title bid when they collide in Saturday's early start? Join us as we preview this pivotal clash on the soccer betting menu and serve up soccer picks.

Barcelona Slip Up Against Sevilla
Barcelona appeared to be well on their way to maintaining their four-point lead in La Liga's table after Lionel Messi and Neymar combined to lift Blaugrana to the 2-0 lead inside the first half of their week 31 clash with Sevilla, only to blow it by conceding a late goal in each half and taking a share in the spoils. The 2-2 draw put a dent in Barcelona's title bid, allowing Real Madrid to close the gap to just two points after they already did their part by beating Eibar 3-0 at the Bernabeu earlier in the day.

With just seven games left on the season, the race for the La Liga title is sure to heat up, if not suffer more twists and turns between these bitter rivals. Barcelona will have to tread carefully, but assertively if they hope to come good on their favorable -250 soccer odds in La Liga futures betting. They can't afford another such misstep otherwise Real Madrid might just overtake them altogether at the top of the table.

What makes things tougher for Barcelona at this crucial juncture is that they are in the midst of a brutal fortnight, which began on a trip to Paris for the first leg of their Champions League quarterfinal clash with PSG on Wednesday. Continues with a return to the Camp Nou for a two-game stretch that includes Valencia on Saturday in La Liga action and then PSG on Tuesday for the return leg, before heading to Espanyol for the Catalan derby. Understandably, after last weekend's draw at the Pizjuan, more than a few soccer bettors were predicting Barcelona might no longer be in the lead by then.

 

Barcelona Bounce Back
Consider just how beautifully Barcelona bounced back this Wednesday with a 3-1 win over PSG in the first leg of their Champions League quarterfinals, a win that almost certainly assures them advancement into the semifinals of Europe's top club competition, it would appear they've righted the ship quickly. (So much for panicking, then.) One can also argue that with less pressure riding now on the return leg of their Champions League tie with PSG next week, they'll be free to focus fully on their upcoming clash with Valencia and the ensuing clash with Espanyol in domestic action. And just like that the schedule doesn't seem so brutal anymore.

To be fair, the 2-2 draw to Sevilla marked their first misstep in ten games spanning almost two months. Prior to round 31 of La Liga betting, the Catalan giants were living up to their moniker, riding a nine-game winning streak in all competitions and six-game winning streak in La Liga, since falling shockingly at home to Malaga in February.

It certainly helps their La Liga title bid that they've managed to take a commanding lead in their tie with PSG before the home leg next Tuesday. Still, they can't take anything for granted in either campaign. The job isn't done until it is.

As far as their La Liga campaign goes, Barcelona still need to come through for soccer bettors this weekend as the -600 soccer betting favorites on the  La Liga odds board in order to maintain their lead over Real Madrid.

 

Valencia Flying High
Valencia isn't a side to take lightly. The high-flying Murcielagos are up to fourth in La Liga, just a point behind Atletico Madrid. They are riding a ten-game undefeated streak ahead of their trip to Camp Nou, so they'll have to fancy their chances even if the odds makers price them as the quintessential long shots at +1000 soccer odds to win outright.

One crumb of comfort for Valencia is that struggling Malaga took all three points at the Camp Nou and Sevilla just thwarted Barcelona with hard work and cunning play to force the draw. Indeed, it's not a whole lot to sink their teeth into, but it shows that even the mighty Catalan giants are fallible from time to time, if not to the outright loss then the draw, which can be backed on your soccer picks at +600 soccer odds or thereabouts depending on your choice sportsbook.

 

Soccer Betting Verdict
Traipsing into the Camp Nou and flying the coop with a result is easier said than done. Many have tried and failed this season, so Valencia will have their work cut out for them if they hope to mastermind the upset either with a win or draw. That said, Barcelona have been guilty of complacency against lesser opponents this season, having lost to both Malaga and Celta de Vigo. So there is some wiggle room, if only big enough to allow a pushy ant to squeeze through.

With Champions League advancement uppermost on their minds, it's possible Barcelona might be complacent in this game. Or they might choose to rest some of their stars for good chunks of the game with Champions League in mind. Or they might be feeling the pressure of Real Madrid's chase in the table and put in a nervy display at the Camp Nou... the scenarios are endless.

Something is going to have to give, obviously. Valencia have plenty of players that can give Barcelona some trouble. Why, earlier this year, they lost to Barcelona 1-0 at home. That they were able to keep it so close on the scoreboard, and  more importantly respectable is another crumb of confidence they can turn to for this weekend's clash at the Camp Nou fortress.

On balance, Barcelona appear to be the likely winners of this game. However, the timing of this match coupled with Valencia's lofty ambitions in La Liga suggest there is a possibility this game might surprise either with the outright upset at +1000 soccer odds by Valencia or the draw at +600. Soccer bettors looking to hedge their bets on their soccer picks can bet on Valencia to win or draw at +350 in double chance betting at bet365. This is a long shot soccer pick, but the business end of the season is usually when things get interesting. It could be the case in Spain's top-flight as the title race heats up between Barcelona and Real Madrid.

La Liga Soccer Picks: Valencia win or draw at +350

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