Barstool’s Champions League Preview – The “R16 Reckoning (Part 2 of 4)” Edition

Sam’s Soccer Safe Space For Stoolies

Hi haters,

Tottenham vs Juventus. One team trying to become a full-fledged member of the cool kids club, the other already a permanent fixture of it. Also, City vs Basel. The big swinging dick of this season’s soccer factory preparing to do (more) unspeakable things to an overmatched (relative) minnow. It’s days like today that I wake up and thank my parents for getting drunk and making a horrible decision. Now sit back, relax, and bask for a moment in the gloriousness of the sweet, sweet melodies:




Reminder of the scores from the first legs:


Two of the eight spots in the quarterfinals have now been spoken for after Liverpool rested some guys and sleepwalked to a scoreless draw that put them through while the Neymar-less PSG – in need of an A+ performance to overturn a two-goal deficit – did what the French tend to do in big situations by ducking and covering and hoping the bad men would go away… unfortunately the bad men did no such thing, and now the club’s Qatari ownership group is has the kind of buyer’s remorse that I could only dream of experiencing someday.

As for the games still to come, this is what we’ve got:


As with yesterday, we’ve got one bonerific matchup and another that is essentially already over and done with. So let’s start with the good’un…


Tottenham [+115]
Juventus [+235]
Draw [+220]

Has anybody been on a quieter 17-game unbeaten streak than Spurs? One of the reasons their recent run feels so sneaky is because along with nice wins the likes of Arsenal [pre-death] and United (and draws at Liverpool and Juventus), the club has also mixed in wildly disappointing draws to things called Newport County and Rochdale. Those results can be brushed off with the excuse that Pochettino tried to rest guys by fielding weak XIs, but it nevertheless goes to show that the team is not quite as deep as hoped. This could prove important given injuries to Toby Alderweireld (and possibly Jan Vertonghen) and suspension of Serge Aurier.

Juventus come in hot as well, and importantly will have the services of playmaking midfielder Paulo Dybala, who is often referred to as the [new] “Argentinian Messi” but has always struck me as more like Eden Hazard. Regardless, Juve will be ecstatic to have Dybala back in the fold as their offense looked rather stagnant for most of the first leg without him. Unfortunately injuries will also play an important role for the Italians, who will be without Federico Bernardeschi and Mario Mandzukic, as well as potentially Hungry, Hungry Higuain up top. This last one could be particularly problematic, not because the portly striker’s recent form has been all that great (hint: it hasn’t), but rather because Max Allegri’s other options are uninspiring to say the least.

I don’t know, man, I’m trying hard to be unbiased and objective but it ain’t easy in a game like this. Shutting down Dybala, especially if Higuain either can’t go or goes but isn’t 100%, will likely fall to guys like Mousa Dembele and Eric Dier. Stopping Dybala seems like a big ask. Just ask all the friends who warned him not to get that dumbass tat.


However, the Dier/Dembele duo at least seems capable of at least slowing him down a bit. Juventus are, after all, coming off a hard fought win over Lazio at the weekend in which they didn’t look all that great offensively even with Dybala running the show… though that said the wee genius still managed to pull off a ridiculous individual effort in the dying moments to score the game’s only goal, showing what happens when defenders shut off their brain just as little as one second… something that Dier is especially prone to here and there.

I’ll be honest. I just hope Spurs go down swinging. Losing 1-0 – in what would be a trademark result for the Italians – would be the worst, most painful result possible. Thankfully there should be no reason for Tottenham to fear Juventus given the way the first game played out, and now that the Wembley curse has been officially killed (or at least forgotten). First goal will be huge, and I’m guessing the Sneaky Silent Smiling South Korean Assassin gets it

with Juventus inevitably pulling one back late on (causing my buttcheeks to clench uncontrollably) but unable to scrounge a second. #UnbiasedOpinionsOnly: I’m going Spurs to “win” (famously once again) 1-1.

Future’s so bright, shoulda worn shades

Future’s so bright, shoulda worn shades


City [-650]
Basel [+1700]
Draw [+650]


Lawdy, lawdy, lawdy. I mean, what really is there to say that can’t be gleaned from the (+1700) moneyline on Basel? City is a godamn machine right now. The one – and only – reason they may not score double-digits today is the fact they are coming home with four goal advantage from the first leg, meaning Pep is likely going to throw some of the JV squad out there. Unfortunately City’s freshman team would probably still beat Basel 2-1 at the Etihad. City to win 3-1.


Lots more action to come tomorrow… hahaha kidding, it’s just Europa. Though as much as I like to make fun of teams playing on Spursday, the Arsenal vs Milan matchup is actually pretty damn interesting – not to mention hugely relevant to the futures of both clubs, but especially Arsene Wenger.


Will Gooners secretly be rooting for their club to lose to once-and-for-all kill their immortal cockroach—excuse me, coach? I honestly have no idea. But at this point I’m not sure I would blame them.

PS, facts only:

Samuel Army