Having successfully brushed aside Napoli at the Camp Nou, the Catalan now make their way to Lisbon where the German champions await them in the quarter-finals. It will be a tough match but Barcelona have a plan for Bayern Munich.
According to the local papers, Sport in particular, Quique Setién has devised a strategy that could help nullify their opponents’ impact. They call it the ‘Anti-Bayern Plan‘.
Reportedly, Barça will play with a four-man midfield as Sergio Busquets and Arturo Vidal return to the lineup. Of course, one forward will have to sacrificed for these tactics to work and Sport say it’s Antoine Griezmann.
Interestingly, both Vidal and Philippe Coutinho on the other side will face their former clubs and will likely have a point to prove. But that’s not the only heated battle we can expect on the pitch.
Mundo Deportivo have highlighted the old Marc-André ter Stegen – Manuel Neuer rivalry. They call it ‘a duel with backstory‘.
Of course, this is a throwback to the ever-lasting debate of who should be Germany’s no1 goalkeeper. Neuer mostly gets the nod in front of Barcelona’s man but he’s also in the twilight of his career.
Recently, the two argued over the spot once again and now, they will face each other in the Champions League. The stakes have never been higher but Barcelona have a plan for Bayern.
Hopefully it works.
Barcelona don’t lose comeback hope with Messi’s outrageous stats vs Sevilla
Later on tonight, Barcelona will do their best to mount another incredible comeback, this time against Sevilla. The Andalusians were the better team in the first leg of the Copa del Rey, winning 2-0 at their home ground. Today, however, they travel to the Camp Nou where they’ll try and keep their lead alive.
And even though we’re talking here about a very strong opponent, the Catalans have reasons to be optimistic. The first one is of course their recent result against that very same opponent. The two sides met in La Liga last weekend and Barcelona snatched up all three points in a convincing 2-0 victory.
This suggests they indeed do have what it takes to edge past Julen Lopetegui’s troops, especially since the game will be played in Catalonia. But there is also one other weapon Barcelona have at their disposal; one that is not exactly a big secret – Lionel Messi.
The little Argentine does feel like a cheat code at times but against Sevilla, that is even more true than usual. After all, Leo has already scored 38 goals and assisted further 19 in just 42 games played against this opposition.
That amounts to 57 goal contributions in 42 games. Even for Messi’s godly standards, that is just an unreal number. With such a player in your team, you can’t help but feel optimistic and hopeful regardless of the opposition.
Of course, we can’t expect Leo to solve games of this magnitude on his own so everyone will have to pull their weight. But even with that being said, if Messi can do what Messi usually does, Barcelona’s ultimate goal becomes that much easier to reach.
With morale high and players ready to tango, it should definitely be a thrilling contest to watch.
Let’s hope Ronald Koeman gets it right. And then, suddenly, the whole season can turn out that much sweeter.