⚽️ Manchester United to win the Champions League
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How Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s Manchester United can beat Ernesto Valverde’s Barcelona in the Champions League. Man Utd face Barcelona in the massive Champions League clash on Wednesday at 20:00.
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Manchester United face Barcelona in the Champions League over two legs for the first time since 2008 and we all know how that ended… but if Manchester United are to progress to the Semi-Final of the Champions League and have hope of reaching the final in Madrid, there’s a lot of work needed against Barca at the games at Old Trafford and the Camp Nou.
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Manchester United know it won’t be an easy ride on Wednesday, especially when you have to face the likes of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Ousmane Dembele. It’s vital that Man United keep things tight at the back, especially after having to come back from two goals down at home to PSG. There’s certainly ways for Man Utd to stop Barcelona’s brilliant attacking line. Man Utd can take lessons from Atletico Madrid’s recent performance against the Catalans. Despite playing with 10 men for over an hour, it took a goal from outside the box to break the deadlock in the 85th minute. Atletico didn’t commit a man to man marking system on Lionel Messi, instead defending in a zonal system. Historically this has been the most successful strategy of dealing with Messi, take Jose Mourinho’s Inter Milan in the 2010 Champions League. Valverde has been a fan of the 4-4-2 this season setting them up in that shape – ter Stegen; Roberto, Pique, Lenglet, Alba; Rakitic, Busquets, Arthur, Coutinho; Messi, Suarez.
Marcus Rashford & Romelu Lukaku could be the key to exploiting the Barcelona defence. Barca have conceded two or more goals on eight occasions in La Liga this season, but seven of those were playing against two strikers. The two direct out balls to the strikers make it difficult for Barcelona’s midfield to cut the passing lanes and with pace in behind, the centre backs can’t step up to intercept. You would hope that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer & Mike Phelan picked up on the trouble a front two caused for Barcelona before the sending off of Diego Costa at the Nou Camp. Dalot & Pogba could be the other two Manchester United players who cause problems for the Spanish side. Diogo Dalot would add quality from the right but the other player key to beating Barcelona is Paul Pogba. Pogba was at his best under Solskjær when he got beyond the forwards and got into the box and he was devastating against both Bournemouth and Chelsea. Barcelona also really struggle with opponents getting in behind their midfield and United’s shape in possession will create opportunities for this. Pogba will get on the ball often but he needs to up his end product. In the eight games since his sending off at PSG, Pogba has been directly involved in just three goals, with one in his last season. But Pogba has the quality and his performances at the World Cup for France suggests he becomes more focused at the later stages of top competitions. Expect Man Utd to lineup in a 4-4-2 – De Gea; Young, Smalling, Lindelof, Shaw; Dalot, Herrera, Matic, Pogba; Rashford, Lukaku.
Can Man United take a solid result to the Camp Nou, for the 2nd leg of the Champions League quarter-final?
#UCL #ManchesterUnited #Solskjaer