Champions League Match Preview: Barça, PSG, and Manchester City Headline Exciting Wednesday Program

2023-10-04 04:00:00

The Champions League continues this Wednesday with Barça, PSG and Manchester City at the heart of an attractive program.

New burst of beautiful posters on the football planet this Wednesday. Kylian Mbappé’s Paris Saint-Germain continues its campaign at Newcastle, England, while Erling Haaland’s Manchester City will face the tricky RB Leipzig. Find out everything you need to know before the matches.

What’s the shock?

Newcastle-PSG promises on paper, as much as Porto-Barcelona, ​​and Dortmund-AC Milan has something to lick their lips about. But to choose, the binoculars will be riveted on the Red Bull Arena, where Leipzig hosts Manchester City at 9:00 p.m. The Germans, winners of the German Super Cup against Bayern Munich (0-3), came out of a draw against the same Bavarians on Saturday (2-2). They were eliminated in the round of 16 of C1 last season by… Manchester City (1-1, 7-0), who went on to win their first European trophy. In March, Haaland scored five goals after 57 minutes against Leipzig. The new Franco-French defense, composed of Mohamed Simakan and Castello Lukeba, is warned.

PSG in what state in Newcastle?

This Paris Saint-Germain is struggling to continue. While he had beaten Lens (3-1) then Lyon (1-4), PSG stumbled against Nice (2-3), rectified the situation against Dortmund (2-0) and Marseille (4-0 ), then stalled again in Clermont on Saturday (0-0). Kylian Mbappé, who returned from a blow to his ankle against OM, moved into Auvergne territory. His friend, Randal Kolo Muani, is still looking for himself. And the offensive solutions for Luis Enrique are limited by the absences of Marco Asensio (injured) and Kang-in Lee (selection). Newcastle have three victories in England, including a crushing one at Sheffield United (0-8). The Magpies have all the trappings for the Parisians who are nevertheless clear favorites.

SEE ALSO – Gonçalo Ramos’ double during PSG-OM on September 24 (4-0)

Who are the French to follow?

Yacine Adli (23 years, AC Milan): Rade Krunic’s injury benefited the former Bordeaux player. He spent AC Milan’s first six matches on the bench before making two starts, with two victories at Cagliari (1-3) and against Lazio Rome (2-0). Positioned as a sentry in front of the defense, Adli will have a hard time facing Dortmund, especially since another Rossonero midfielder, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, is out this Wednesday, in addition to Ismaël Bennacer, who has been injured for a long time. If Adli wants to make his mark in Milan, it’s now.

Jules Koundé (24 years old, FC Barcelona): He has started 8 of 9 matches for an undefeated Barça this season. More than ever, Jules Koundé has the confidence of Xavi, his trainer, who described him as “fundamental piece» at the end of last season. “The new recruits have integrated well and we enjoy playing together on the pitch. We started the season well. I feel good personally», Declared the Blues defender after the big success at the expense of Royal Antwerp two weeks ago (5-0). The trip to Porto, eighth finalist in the Champions League last season, is an interesting test.

Jules Koundé tackling Royal Antwerp striker Michel-Ange Balikwisha. JOSEP LAGO / AFP

Antoine Griezmann (32 years old, Atlético de Madrid): Eternal keystone of the Colchoneros, Antoine Griezmann has a meeting with the modest Feyenoord Rotterdam, from 6:45 p.m. in front of his Madrid audience. With three goals in seven La Liga matches, the world champion has started his season with a crescendo. Atlético is doing well (4th in La Liga), but it would be better with a first European victory this season. Griezmann witnessed the improbable equalization, at the last second, of the Lazio Rome goalkeeper, Ivan Provedel, to snatch a draw from the Madrilenians (1-1).

They will also be out: Mike Maignan, Théo Hernandez and Olivier Giroud (AC Milan), Mohamed Simakan and Castello Lukeba (RB Leipzig), Mattéo Guendouzi (Lazio Rome), Lucas Hernandez, Nordi Mukiele, Warren Zaire-Emery, Bradley Barcola, Kylian Mbappé and Randal Kolo Muani (PSG)

Which teams have (almost) their backs to the wall?

It’s still too early to talk about an imperative victory, but Borussia Dortmund would be well advised to lay down the law at home, against AC Milan. The Yellow and Black, beaten in Paris (2-0), are last in group F behind PSG (3 pts), Newcastle and Milan (1 pt). Two matches, not the sexiest, also risk weighing heavily on the future: Red Star Belgrade-Young Boys Bern and Royal Antwerp-Shakthar Donetsk. The four teams, defeated on the first day, have zero points. Woe to the losers.

Why is Royal Antwerp going to experience a historic evening?

143 years old. This is the time that will have passed between the founding of Royal Antwerp, in 1880, and its first home match in the most prestigious European competition. In Belgium, the club, considered the oldest in the country, is nicknamed “the Great Old“. In Antwerp, in the Bosuilstadion and its 16,000 capacity seats, the team coached by Mark van Bommel, former Dutch midfielder who won the C1 with Barça (2006), hosts the Ukrainians from Shakhtar Donetsk at 6:45 p.m. “I don’t want to put unnecessary pressure on us, but if you want to do something in the group, you have to take points at home“, warned Captain Toby Alderweireld. The latter has 46 appearances in the Champions League. This is therefore 45 more than Royal Antwerp.

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