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10.12.2008 13:35

Excellent away record in Europe

Vanessa Forns

Having completed the group stages of the Champions League in midweek, FC Barcelona can look back on a start to the campaign that saw them record two away wins out of three away from home.

Apart from the defeat on Tuesday at home against Shakhtar Donetsk (2-3), the good form of Pep Guardiola’s side saw them win four and draw one to book their place in the next round. Strong performances both at home and away meant that they went into the game this week having also clinched top spot.

The overall statistics show Barça recorded four wins, one draw and one defeat and to chalk up a tally of 13 points, one more than the team that finished in second place, Sporting Club, and four and 12 more than Shakhtar and Basel respectively.

Goals galore

QM3D3732.jpgAlthough there are still games from the groups E, F, G and H, it is likely that Barça will finish the opening Champions League stage as top scorers away from home with 18 goals netted on their travels. Only Arsenal and Olympique Lyonnais, with 11 and 12 goals respectively, can have any chance of beating the Blaugrana’s tally.

Keeping possession

Another impressive statistic for Barça is that they have enjoyed the most possession of any team in the Champions League with 62 per cent. The next nearest to them are Manchester United and Arsenal with 55 per cent and then Bayern Munich are not far behind having had an average of 54 per cent, but have played a game less.

Shots at goal

FC Barcelona have had the most shots at goal of any team in the competition this term with Guardiola’s players registering no less than 54 shots, while Werder Bremen were just behind with 52.

Youth team

basel-fcb.jpgWithout doubt, the arrival of Guardiola as coach of Barça has seen a rise in the number of youth players promoted to the first team for Champions League matches. In that sense, no less than 12 players that have come through the Barça youth ranks have appeared in Europe this term. Víctor Vázquez was the latest to make his debut when he played against Shakhtar on Tuesday. Other Barça Atlètic players, such as Botía, Xavi Torres and Abraham

Sergio Busquets has consolidated his place in the squad with four Champions League appearances, while Víctor Sánchez and Pedro are not far behind with three games each under their belts.
Excellent away record in Europe
Messi is top scorer
Lionel Messi is FC Barcelona’s top goalscorer in the Champions League so far with five goals to his name. Just behind the Argentinian playmaker is Bojan Krkic with three goals while Sergio Busquets and Xavi have two apiece and Rafa Márquez, Samuel Eto’o, Thierry Henry, Gerard Piqué and Sylvinho have one each.

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