Many people argue that there is no such thing as a certainty in sport, especially football but there are always exceptions to the rule and Barcelona winning the Champions League in 2012 looks just as good as a football certainty as you could find…
The current odds of 13/8 about Barcelona winning the Champions League for a second successive year in 2012 looks far too good to miss. The odds may not appeal to everyone but as there is not a team in Europe that can get even close to the Catalans right now, it must considered as the football bet of 2012! Real Madrid were widely considered to be the best team to possibly end Barcelona’s European and domestic dominance but the manner by which Barca demolished their rival at the Bernabeu recently suggests otherwise. The 3-1 win for Pep Guardiola’s side could have been a lot worse for Mourinho’s Madrid but it was still Barcelona who left the Spanish capital with the three points to close the gap on Real to just three points.
Barcelona has been drawn to play Bayer Leverkusen in the last 16 of the Champions League, a game that should pose no complications and see the four times European Champions safely through to the Quarter Finals. It is at this stage that they would likely face a tougher test but as they have proven time and again, especially over two legs, they are very difficult to beat.
With Madrid in equally as impressive form in Europe(qualifying with six wins from six games in the group stage), they are the second favourites to win the competition but as they found out last year, it is likely that they would have to overcome Barca at some stage. Twelve months ago it was in the semi finals and their best hope would be if the draw was kind to them and kept the two apart ’til the final but as Barcelona has shown, they have the measure of their rivals and it’s difficult to see what could happen to change the current balance of power.
Other teams who feature prominently in the bookmakers Champions League odds include Bayern Munich, Chelsea, Arsenal and the two Milan clubs, none of which you could make a solid case for beating Barcelona. Perhaps Munich, with the final being played at the Allianz arena, could pose the biggest threat with home advantage but still,Barcelona is still capable of beating anyone, despite the possibility of a hostile atmosphere.
Quite understandably, Barca’s Lionel Messi is the 4/5 odds on favourite to finish the Champions League top scorer. The Argentine forward has already netted six times and given the fact that his team should reach the final, than he has another seven games to add to that tally.
Arguably the best domestic football team seen for many years, Barcelona look unstoppable and whilst nothing is 100% assured, the prospect of this team becoming the first team in the Champions League era to win the competition two years running looks as near as guaranteed as you can get in sport.