Bayer Leverkusen vs. Barcelona: How Barca Can Advance in Champions League

Roberto Alvarez-GallosoChief Writer IFebruary 13, 2012

FC Barcelona
FC BarcelonaDavid Ramos/Getty Images

FC Barcelona lost to Osasuna in their latest match at a worst possible time. La Blaugrana is to face Bayer Leverkusen in the UEFA Champions League (UCL) on Valentines Day 2012.

The match against Osasuna was there for the taking by Barca. What happened was that Barca did not play their cards right.

What is the future for La Blaugrana in the UCL after the debacle against Osasuna? What can FC Barcelona do to advance in the UCL?

UCL Classification and Current Experience

FC Barcelona is currently in first place in the Group H UCL with 16 points. It is in first place in the UEFA Rankings for 2011-2012.

Barca is the winner of four UCL trophies, including 2010-2011 after defeating Manchester United at Wembley. La Blaugrana won in Leverkusen by 2-1 and at Camp Nou 2-0.

Andres Iniesta, Carles Puyol and Xavi Hernandez played prominent roles in the two matches. What about Bayer Leverkusen?

Bayer Leverkusen is in 31st place in the UEFA Rankings for 2011-2012. Leverkusen may have its work cut out for them.

What Can Barca Do?

The Barca players did the right thing in accepting responsibility for their defeat to Osasuna. Barca also deserve high marks for refusing to invent excuses for their mess.

The next step is for Barca to learn from the mistakes that it made and keep going. La Blaugrana must not allow itself to concede goals and that is where Jose Manuel Pinto's goal keeping skills can be used.

The 4-3-3 formation as well as a strong defensive position will help Barca in this crucial match. The rest depends on La Blaugrana not resting on its laurels.