Barcelona topped a tough group and were guaranteed to face a second-placed team in the round of 16
The Champions League group stage features several quality teams and Barcelona were guaranteed to face a quality side in the round of 16.
Ernesto Valverde’s men had guaranteed qualification before the final game. However, they were able to beat a strong Inter Milan side with their B-team and kept top spot.
The Catalans were one of six teams not to lose a match in this season’s group stage but will face another team holding that record.
Napoli finished second to Liverpool in their group despite having three wins and three draws. The Italians were able to beat the Reds in Italy and will be a tough clash for Barca in the first leg.
The Catalans will have home advantage in the second, and they should be favourites for this knockout round.
Chaos at Napoli
The Italians were great in the Champions League under Carlo Ancelotti this season, but have struggled in the league.
Napoli lie eighth in Serie A and are 18 points behind leaders Inter Milan. Gennaro Gattuso has been named as the manager and he is a fiery character, to say the least.
However, Barca should have a lot of quality in their side to pick up the win. They are also leading La Liga, but are tied with Real Madrid on the same number of points.
The worry for Barca would be a repeat of their performances over the last two years. AS Roma pulled off a great miracle to beat them in the quarter-finals while Liverpool dumped them out of the competition last season.
Barca held a 3-0 lead over the Reds but were blown away 4-0 at Anfield. The Reds were even without Mohamed Salah for the clash, but Lionel Messi and company just couldn’t go it.
Of course, having the Argentine in the team should give them more than a chance of going through.
It will be interesting to see if Gattuso can get Napoli going again, however, there were some mixed reactions from the Barcelona fans regarding this clash: