With the UEFA Champions League back in action, it will be Borussia Dortmund that welcomes Paris Saint-Germain to the Signal Iduna Park for the first leg of the Round of 16 clash. The last time the two teams went head to head was in 2010 as the game ended in a goalless draw. The team to win on aggregate after the end of both ties will proceed to quarter-finals of the European competition.
Date- Wednesday, February 19
Kick-Off- 1:30 AM (IST)
Venue- Signal Iduna Park
Marco Reus remains on the sidelines for the German club, which adds further impetus on the ever so prolific goalscorer Erling Haaland. Julian Brandt’s ankle issue makes him a doubt to start, while Thomas Delaney will also be assessed prior to kickoff. Jadon Sancho and Thorgan Hazard will be expected to play out wide. Axel Witsel and Emre Can should accommodate central midfield. Akanji, Hummels and Piszczek are likely to be the three-man defence.
Neymar was ruled out for the last four games for PSG but should be back in the advanced role for the away side. Thiago Silva had a disappointing outing in the 4-4 draw to Amiens and could be dropped by Thomas Tuchel. Marquinhos could be used as an alternative to fit in at centre-half if Silva is benched, while Marco Verratti and Idrissa Gueye could be made available in central midfield. Kylian Mbappe and Mauro Icardi are the ideal front two.
DOR (Expected Playing 11)- Burki; Akanji, Hummels, Piszczek; Guerreiro, Witsel, Can, Hakimi; Sancho, Hazard, Haaland
PSG (Expected Playing 11)- Navas; Meunier, Marquinhos, Kimpembe, Bernat; Di Maria, Verratti, Gueye, Neymar; Mbappe, Icardi
Erling Haaland will be the obvious threat on the attack for Borussia Dortmund. Before his move to Dortmund, The 19-year-old centre-forward bagged eight goals from six Champions League games for Red Bull Leipzig.
Kylian Mbappe has been one of the key players for PSG for quite a while now. The French forward has registered five goals, three assists with a pass accuracy of 86% from 33o minutes in the Champions League this season.
Jadon Sancho has been one of the standouts for Borussia Dortmund in the advanced role. Sancho has two goals, two assists and a pass accuracy of 85.4% from six appearances in the Champions League this season.
Mauro Icardi can pack a punch on the attacking front for PSG. The Argentine international has five goals and a pass accuracy of 69.8% from 401 minutes in the Champions League this season.
The two clubs have faced off twice before as both those games ended as a draw in the Uefa Europa League
With both Dortmund and PSG having bags of quality on their side, a high scoring draw could be the possible outcome.
Goalkeeper- K Navas
Defenders- A Hakimi, M Hummels, J Bernat
Midfielders- R Guerreiro, A Witsel, M Verratti, A D Maria
Forwards- J Sancho (VC), K Mbappe, M Icardi (C)
Goalkeeper- R Burki
Defenders- A Hakimi, P Kimpebe, Marquinhos
Midfielders- R Guerreiro, A Witsel, I Gueye, A D Mardia
Forwards- E Haaland (C), K Mbappe, Neymar (VC)
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