Tonight, all eyes will be on a thrilling Champions League Round of 16 match between Barcelona and PSG. The absence of Neymar due to injury takes some of the flavour out of this match, but it is clear that the tie will be contested hotly between two sides who have whipped up quite a bit of rivalry in recent years.
In the knockout stages of the UEFA Champions League, Barcelona have only won one of their last nine away games, which was a 1-0 victory over Manchester United in April 2019. They’ve scored only three goals in nine games, with six of them going scoreless.
If Barcelona are to keep their Champions League hopes alive, they will need an extraordinary performance tonight.
As per away goals rule, Barcelona needs the result to be 3-0 in their favour or better in order to qualify for the quarter-final.
Although their European aspirations are on a knife’s edge, Ronald Koeman’s side did manage to warm up for this game by defeating Osasuna 2-0 in La Liga, with Jordi Alba and teenage protege Ilaix Moriba scoring the goals.
Predicted Barcelona Lineup To Face PSG
Gerard Pique and Sergi Roberto will not be included in the Barcelona lineup against PSG due to injury. Philippe Coutinho is also out of the squad till April while Ansu Fati remains out.
Ter Stegen has been a vital player for Barcelona. He hasn’t been that consistent this season but is slowly getting back to his best. A clean sheet is an absolute must for Barcelona to have any chance of progressing.
Ronald Koeman has been trying a different formation in the last couple of matches with three at the back and they seem comfortable playing in that.
So, he might continue with the same set up to keep the feared PSG attack at bay. It will be Mingueza and Umiti as right and left centre backs respectively. And, Lenglet will hold the centre back position.
Barcelona could go with three central midfielders in Frenkie De Jong, Sergio Busquets and Pedri.
Riqui Puig, Miralem Pjanic and Ilaix Moriba are likely to start on the bench.
Sergino Dest and Jordi Alba are likely to be stationed as the wingbacks in the Barcelona lineup. This could help both of them to join the attack and drop back to defend the block.
Lionel Messi will start as one of the front two. Koeman has a difficult choice on whom to choose between Ousmane Dembele and Antoine Griezmann. Griezmann failed to take his chance against Osasuna and that is something Koeman and the team cannot afford at the moment.