Both sides have been misfiring in the final third and there should be plenty of interest in opposing a high-scoring clash when they meet
Barcelona travel to the Estadio de la Ceramica to face Villarreal in La Liga on Saturday evening with both sides having suffered midweek disappointment in the Champions League.
Unai Emery’s side were beaten 2-0 at home by Manchester United in a match they dominated yet failed to take their chances, while Xavi Hernandez’s first European game in charge of Barca saw his side held to a goalless stalemate at home by Benfica.
No side has drawn more matches than Villarreal this season in La Liga, with seven of the Yellow Submarine’s 13 matches ending as stalemates.
Another draw can be backed at 12/5 (3.40) with bet365 while the hosts are offered at 17/10 (2.70) and Barcelona at 8/5 (2.60).
Villarreal vs Barcelona first goalscorer
Arnaut Danjuma is Villarreal’s top scorer this season and is priced at 9/2 (5.50) to break the deadlock just ahead of his Dutch compatriot at Barcelona, Memphis Depay, who is offered at 5/1 (6.00).
Gerard Moreno remains a doubt having missed the last month of action with an injury but is priced at 11/2 (6.50) should he be fit enough to return, while another player who is making a comeback from injury, Ousmane Dembele, is on offer at 7/1 (8.00).
Villarreal vs Barcelona preview
Both sides have badly lacked a cutting edge this season and, while in the past this fixture was almost a guarantee of goals, Saturday’s game could be a lot tighter.
For many years the top scorers in La Liga, this season Barca have been extremely wasteful, with six teams netting more than their total of 20 goals, while Villarreal have managed just 15 strikes.
Barca are yet to win away from home this season and four of their five games on the road have seen under 2.5 goals, while in all competitions five of their last six clashes have seen less than three goals scored.
Meanwhile, five of Villarreal’s last eight matches in La Liga have all ended with the ball finding the back of the net no more than twice, and there could be serious value in backing another low scoring encounter.
Villarreal vs Barcelona tips & predictions
Under 2.5 goals is priced at evens (2.00) which looks like a highly attractive price. Both sides are lacking in expertise in the final third and with neither at their best, it could be a cagey game on Saturday evening.
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Odds correct at the time of writing. Please gamble responsibly.