LaLiga is already long behind us and now, it’s time to focus on the big one – the Champions League. According to the recent reports from Catalan papers, Quique Setién has already chosen his lineup to face Napoli at the Camp Nou.
At least that’s what Mundo Deportivo are reporting on today’s cover with the title ‘The XI Against Napoli‘. They are suggesting he will face the Italians with Antoine Griezmann rejoining Lionel Messi and Luis Suárez in attack.
In midfield, Sergi Roberto would start alongside Ivan Rakitić and Frenkie de Jong, who is finally ready to start once again after a niggling injury. This, however, would mean Barcelona would be deployed in their standard 4-3-3 system.
Of course, that wouldn’t be surprising at all and it’s believable that Setién has already chosen his lineup for Napoli. However, Sport are going down a slightly different road again. Their cover says ‘3-5-2 Against Napoli‘, suggesting a complete change in structure for the Catalans.
In this system, Nélson Semedo would act as the third centre-back alongside Gerard Piqué and Clement Lenglet while Roberto and Jordi Alba would be deployed as wing-backs to support the midfield.
Sport’s formation also doesn’t have Griezmann while Riqui Puig would get a chance in midfield from the word go.
Either way, the clash will surely be a nail-biting one regardless of the lineup. The Italians are pretty optimistic and believe they can eliminate Barça and progress further into the competition.
Ronald Koeman talks about Ousmane Dembélé’s future
Ronald Koeman has spoken in the press conference ahead of Barcelona’s clash against Celta Vigo on Thursday evening. The Dutchman told that his future is in the hands of the Catalan club, but also relies on Dembélé himself.
“Those decisions (about Ousmane Dembélé’s future) are up to the club, and also up to the player. As you have seen in the last few weeks, as long as we have the player, I will count on him. He didn’t start the other day (against Villarreal) because there are other players and Ansu Fati has shown he is great for his team.”, said Koeman.
Koeman added that the winger’s form has dropped compared to the beginning, but that he did well today so the Dutch manager will count on him on Thursday:
“Dembélé has to wait for his chance to play, but he did play in other games. He was a bit better at the beginning, he had a bit of a lull last week but he has done very well in training today. Thus, I will count on him.”