Barcelona vs. Real Sociedad Tips, Preview and Predictions

Barcelona vs. Real Sociedad, La Liga

Barcelona begin life without Lionel Messi when they host Real Sociedad at the Nou Camp on Sunday evening. Losing their talisman and the greatest player in the club’s history is sure to have an incredible impact on the Catalan giants, but it remains to be seen how that translates to their results on the pitch. 

Where and when: Nou Camp – 15 August, kick-off 19:00

Where you can see Barcelona vs. Real Sociedad: La Liga TV

Last time: Messi got two of Barca’s goals as the Blaugrana thrashed Sociedad 6-1 the last time they crossed paths, which was in San Sebastian in March. 

Barcelona v Real Sociedad Predictions and Preview

Unfortunately for Barcelona, the problems at the club run far deeper than merely the exit of one of the finest players in footballing history. The Catalans are in real trouble financially, and they could do without the visit of a team who have the potential to plunge them further into the mire this weekend. 

Sociedad may have crumbled the last time these clubs played each other, while they also have a poor record against Barca after failing to win any of their 13 games against the Blaugrana in all competitions. However, Los Txuri-Urdin finished fifth last season and are capable of playing some exciting stuff. 

Imanol Alguacil’s side are 7/2 to begin the new campaign with a famous victory at the Nou Camp, which would be their first away to Barca in recent memory. Despite their woes, the home team are the 7/9 favourites in these Barcelona v Real Sociedad predictions, with the draw priced at 17/5

Our Eurotips Odds Free bets Bookie

Barcelona to win and BTTS

11/5 Offer Williamhill

Barcelona to win 3-1

13/1 Offer Betvictor

Over 3.5 goals

6/4 Offer 888sport

Given their turmoil, escaping from this season opener unbeaten is far from the worst outcome for the Catalans. Their very foundations have been rocked, while new signings such as Memphis Depay and Sergio Aguero cannot even be registered due to salary cap issues. The latter is injured anyway and set to miss the opening weeks of the campaign. 

If Ronald Koeman thought he was walking into a mess last season, the Dutch coach could be forgiven for thinking he is cursed this term. The Nou Camp is expected to be around 70% full due to the ongoing pandemic, and the reaction of the home support promises to be telling. 

All-out mutiny could be on the cards, especially after the likes of Samuel Umtiti have been booed in pre-season after reportedly refusing to leave the club to help the dire financial straits the powers that be have plunged Barca into. 

Even so, the Blaugrana still have the quality within their ranks to pick up the points in this game, not least in the form of teen sensations Pedri and Ansu Fati. Opportunity knocks for a raft of players to prove their worth at the club, with big money signings such as Antoine Griezmann and Philippe Coutinho hoping to finally show what they can do. 

One to watch for Barcelona: Antoine Griezmann needs to step up as Barca’s main man, and a big performance against his former club would go a long way towards settling the nerves in Catalonia. The Frenchman is 9/2 to break the deadlock in this Barcelona v Real Sociedad preview. 

One to watch for Real Sociedad: Alexander Isak scored 17 goals in 34 La Liga appearances last season. The Swedish striker is also 9/2 in the first scorer market for this weekend’s encounter. 

Long shot: Barca have scored 26 goals across their last nine victories over Sociedad, at an average of 2.9 per game. They’ve conceded 10 at the other end, at a rate of just over one per game, with a 3-1 home win on Sunday priced at 13/1. With Griezmann scoring first, those odds increase to 71/1

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