Barcelona will take on Manchester United in the first leg of the Champions League quarterfinal on Wednesday. We take a look at Barca’s predicted line up for the game.
Barcelona gained a major boost last week after their win against Atletico Madrid, as goals from Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi put the side 11 points ahead of the second-placed Simeone’s side.
The Catalan giants can now shift their focus on the Champions League – a competition where the side has been underwhelming for the past few seasons.
While their arch-rivals Real Madrid cruised to three consecutive Champions League titles under Zinedine Zidane, Barcelona faced defeats in three straight Champions League seasons. Valverde’s men will aim to put a stop to their disappointing run when they take on Manchester United at Old Trafford on Wednesday.
But how will the side line up against Solskjaer’s men? Let’s take a look at Barcelona’s predicted line up for the clash.
Barcelona predicted line up vs Manchester United:
Goalkeeper – Marc-Andre ter Stegen
The game will also be the clash of two world-class goalkeepers, with David De Gea guarding the goal on the other end. Marc-Andre ter Stegen emerged as one of the top goalkeepers in the world during his time at Barcelona, and Valverde would want his keeper to be alert for Manchester United’s counter-attacking threats.
Defence: Semedo, Pique, Lenglet, Alba
After being on the bench for the game against Atletico Madrid, Nelson Semedo is expected to return to the starting XI against Manchester United. Gerard Pique will return to his former club for the first time since 2009 and Clement Lenglet might be given preference over Samuel Umtiti due to the latter’s issues with pace.
Piqué will get some rest against Huesca! He’ll be suspended. Right in between the Man United games.
— TalkFCB (@FCBNewsRoom) April 6, 2019
Jordi Alba will retain his place in the starting XI.
Midfield: Busquets, Rakitic, Arthur
Sergio Busquets will have a significant role to play in the game, as he would shield the Barcelona defence against a pacy Manchester United attack. Ivan Rakitic and Arthur will have a job to do in creating chances for the Barcelona attackers, as the side is expected to maintain most of the possession in the game.
Sergi Roberto could also make an appearance in the midfield in the later stages of the game.
Forward: Messi, Suarez, Coutinho
While Ousmane Dembele is likely to be fit for the Manchester United clash, it is unlikely for Valverde to draft the French youngster straight into the starting XI. Dembele was not in the squad for the game against Atletico Madrid. However, it is possible that he could make a substitute appearance at Old Trafford, depending on the scoreline/performance.
This is for the people who still have hope.. Coutinho will never go to United pic.twitter.com/wSgGR1PUtl
— Boom💥 (@TheJKloppEra) April 7, 2019
While Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez are the obvious two of the three-line attack, underperforming Brazilian star Phil Coutinho might be given another chance. Coutinho and Suarez have played against Manchester United on various occasions during their time at Liverpool.
Barcelona predicted line up vs Manchester United: ter Stegen; Semedo, Pique, Lenglet, Alba; Busquets, Rakitic, Arthur; Messi, Suarez, Coutinho