Both sides are heading into the match on the back of contrasting forms, as the hosts have lost their last two games across all competitions, while Bayern are aiming to extend their winning streak to four games across all competitions.
The UEFA Champions League has resumed and big guns Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern Munich are set to square off in the first leg of the las-16 clash at Parc des Princes on Tuesday night. Both sides are heading into the match on the back of contrasting forms, as the hosts have lost their last two games across all competitions, while Bayern are aiming to extend their winning streak to four games across all competitions. Meanwhile the Bavarians had gotten the better of PSG 3-2 on aggregate in the quarter-finals of the last edition of the competition. Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting’s lone goal in the second leg separated the two sides in Paris and helped Bayern progress to the next round.
⚽️ 𝐌𝐀𝐓𝐂𝐇 𝐃𝐀𝐘 / 𝐉𝐎𝐔𝐑 𝐃𝐄 𝐌𝐀𝐓𝐂𝐇 ⚽️
🆚 Bayern Munich
🏟️ Parc des Princes
🔴 #ICICESTPARIS 🔵 pic.twitter.com/h4sX9YFNS9
— Paris Saint-Germain (@PSG_inside) February 14, 2023
PSG have been struggling of late, with injuries and virus outbreak in the team. Last time out, head coach Christopher Galierer was forced to bench a number of first team players. Lionel Messi is doubtful for the crucial match because of a hamstring problem, while Kylian Mbappe is out with a thigh issue. As for Bayern, Sadio Mane and Lucas Hernandez are occupying the medical room, alongside Ryan Gravenberch and Noussair Mazraoui. Meanwhile, the rest of the squad is fit and ready to go. Here are some of the key battles to look out for.
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Jamal Musiala is arguably the best player for Bayern this season. The German youngster is in blisetering form, having recorded ten goals and seven assists in 19 Bundesliga games this season. The 19-year-old’s ability to take on defenders in-and-around the penalty box is up there with the best in the world. He has also got a great vision in the final third. The attacking midfielder will be closely monitored by Danilo Pereira, who has got a solid defensive game. But the Portuguese footballer cannot afford to give Musiala any kind of space and time otherwise he will most likely be punished.
Since Mbape is injured and Messi is doubtful against Bayern, Neymar will need to shoulder PSG’s attacking duties. The Brazilian has netted 17 goals and provided 12 assists for the Parisians in 27 games across all competitions this season. The 31-year-old is likely to operate down the left channel, cutting inside onto his right foot and having a go at goal. He has got this natural ability to take on defenders with ease and therefore Bayern defender Dayot Upamecano will need to be on his toes to keep the former Barcelona-man silent. The French centre-back is very fast and robust in defence.
It will be interesting to see the battle between two Champions League veterans, Thomas Muller and Sergio Ramos. Both of them have won a combined total of six Champions League trophies. Muller is likely to operate behind the central striker. He is not an out-and-out striker but the German international has got this knack of scoring important goals. The 33-year-old’s off-the-ball movements are simply brilliant. In Paris, Muller will be up against Ramos. The 36-year-old Spaniard is a no nonsense defender, who will always let the attackers know his presence. The former Real Madrid-man doesn’t shy away from putting his body on the line and is a warrior on the field.
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