Man Utd and Barcelona take each other on in the first leg of the Champions League quarterfinal on Wednesday. We offer Dream11 prediction for the MUN vs BAR game.
Manchester United faces a huge task on their road to Champions League glory this season, as the side hosts Barcelona for the first leg of the quarterfinal.
The Catalan giants are high on confidence after registering a 2-0 win over Atletico Madrid last weekend, which puts them in pole position for a second consecutive league title. Manchester United, meanwhile, took a mighty fall after their stunning win over PSG, as the side lost three games across all competitions since.
Solskjaer’s men faced a knock-out in the FA Cup quarterfinal from Wolves, who also beat them in the league’s mid-week fixture last week. The side conceded a league defeat to Arsenal as well, and face an uphill task to ensure a top-4 place.
As both sides take each other on for the first leg at Old Trafford, let’s take a look at how one can form a Dream11 line up for the clash.
But first, let’s take a look at the predicted XIs for both the sides.
Manchester United – De Gea; Shaw, Smalling, Lindelof, Young; Matic, Ander Herrera, Pogba; Rashford, Lukaku, Martial
Barcelona – ter Stegen; Semedo, Pique, Lenglet, Alba; Busquets, Rakitic, Arthur; Messi, Suarez, Coutinho
Man Utd vs Barcelona Dream11 prediction:
Goalkeeper – Marc-Andre ter Stegen (8.5 cr)
The Barcelona keeper emerged as one of the best goalkeepers in the world during his time at Camp Nou. This season, he has the fourth highest percentage of saves across the top five leagues in Europe (72.2%).
While Barcelona is likely to have more possession and more shots on Manchester United’s goal, the only threat Ter Stegen faces is through counter-attacks. After a rather stunning 4-4 draw against Villarreal, Barcelona must have surely addressed the problems surrounding the handling of counter-attacks.
🧤 Save percentage
Oblak – 80%
Alisson – 75.6%
Lloris – 72.5%
Ter Stegen – 72.2%
De Gea – 70.7%
Ederson – 66.2%
Courtois – 65.2%
— Unibet (@unibet) April 7, 2019
Sergio Busquets and Phil Coutinho have acknowledged the Premier League side’s counter-attacking threats as well, so it is likely that ter Stegen would be better prepared to deal with Manchester United’s attackers.
While it is possible that De Gea might make more saves due to Barcelona’s obvious possession, it also complements the theory that De Gea may concede more. Remember, two points will be deducted from your Dream11 side for two goals conceded, so ter Stegen is a safer choice.
Defence: Alba (9 cr), Pique (8.5 cr), Lenglet (8 cr), Lindelof (8.5 cr), Shaw (8.5 cr)
Apart from the probability that Barcelona may keep a clean sheet, the likes of Pique, Alba and Lenglet will be placed better to keep up with Manchester United’s counter-attacking. Hence, it also increases the probability of successful tackles.
Victor Lindelof and Luke Shaw have been impressive this season. As mentioned earlier, Barcelona is expected to have possession so expect a long night for Manchester United’s defenders. While both, Lindelof and Shaw have shown impressive defensive skills, the latter is also handy on the wing during the attack.
Midfield: Rakitic (9 cr), Pogba (10 cr), Coutinho (8.5 cr)
I place my money on Phil Coutinho for this game. The Brazilian has had a difficult season at Camp Nou so far, and with Ousmane Dembele still unfit, Valverde is likely to give Coutinho a start.
The attacker has ample experience of lining up against Manchester United and will come with a point to prove against his former arch-rivals. Coutinho has spoken in length about beating the Old Trafford outfit last week as well, so I expect him to turn on the show.
Ivan Rakitic will be assigned with the task to channel the ball across to the attacking third for Barcelona, and so, he has a huge role to play in the game. With Barca attaining most of the ball possession, Rakitic will be the central figure in the Barcelona midfield. This is the reason why I choose him as the vice-captain of the side.
Barcelona have tried for Pogba once…
Will they try again? 👀 pic.twitter.com/8SRKdwTIE8
— Goal (@goal) April 8, 2019
The only Manchester United midfielder I’ve picked is Paul Pogba. With the other two midfielders (most likely to be Ander Herrera and Scott McTominay/Nemanja Matic) will be assigned defensive duties, Paul Pogba will lead the charge to help the attacking third for Manchester United.
Forwards: Messi (11.5 cr), Lukaku (10 cr)
This is where I faced a significant dilemma. Obviously, Luis Suarez is a lethal striker, and like Phil Coutinho, has experience of playing against Barcelona.
However, his Champions League record suggests otherwise. The Uruguayan forward has scored only one goal in the last two seasons in the competition. Moreover, he is yet to open his goalscoring account in the Champions League this season.
Romelu Lukaku was at the receiving end of two brilliant counter-attacking moves in the second-leg against PSG. With Manchester United expected to play the game against Barcelona in a similar way, I place my money on Romelu Lukaku instead of Suarez.
Lionel Messi’s incredible form makes him an obvious choice for the captain of the side.
My Dream11 team:
ter Stegen; Alba, Pique, Lenglet, Lindelof, Shaw; Rakitic (v-c), Pogba, Coutinho; Messi (c), Lukaku