The UEFA Champions League resumes with mouth-watering motion, kicking off the knockout stage with the defending champions, Manchester Metropolis set to tackle FC Copenhagen at Parken Stadium on Tuesday evening.
Copenhagen hosts the treble winners to their dwelling within the Spherical-of-16, first-leg fixture. They completed second in a difficult Group A, alongside Manchester United, Galatasaray, and Bayern Munich, securing 8 factors with two wins and two attracts outshining each the Purple Devils and the Turkish aspect, progressing to the knockout stage.
In the meantime, Manchester Metropolis, with their top-notch performances, secured victories in all of their group-stage matches, boasting a 100% win document. They completed as Group G winners with 18 factors, getting into the Final-16 to proceed their title protection. Moreover, they’re in high type within the Premier League, amassing an array of wins.
Notably, these two sides have confronted one another 4 occasions, and the Danish champions are nonetheless in search of their first win over the Residents, with 2 attracts and a couple of defeats in all their earlier encounters. The English aspect will view this fixture as a possibility to safe their third victory over the Lions.
When and The place?
Date: Tuesday 13 Feb, 2024
Time: 20:00 HRS BST
Venue: Parken, Copenhagen
Referee: Raúl Cabañero
Assistants referees: Iñigo Prieto & Juan Martínez Munuera
VAR: Guillermo Cuadra
Fourth Official: Cesar Soto Grado
The hosts will miss their key midfielder, Lukas Lerager who performed each single minute of the group stage and scored three essential objectives attributable to crimson card suspension. He might be joined on the sidelines by Davit Khocholava and Theo Sander, each of whom are out with knee accidents. Additionally, Birger Meling is uncertain as he’s nursing a muscle harm.
The guests’ star-studded squad might be in full swing with no accidents or absences on the checklist. Their latest absentee, the prolific Norwegian striker, made an astonishing return after lacking a number of video games and might be keen to begin for his aspect on Tuesday.
The Danish champions haven’t performed any aggressive fixtures since their closing group stage 1-0 victory over Galatasaray two months in the past, as their home league has but to renew following the midseason break. Nonetheless, they face a big problem that awaits the aspect managed by Jacob Neestrup after sneaking into the knockout stage, going up in opposition to the world champions.
The Danish boss is anticipated to make use of his common 4-3-3 attacking setup, with Kamil Grabara in purpose and a dependable back-line that includes. The middle-back pairing of Kevin Diks and Denis Vavro, with Peter Ankersen and Elias Jelert as full-backs on both aspect of the protection, fortifies their defensive construction.
In midfield, Viktor Claesson steps into the boots of the suspended Lukas Lerager, alongside Diogo Goncalves and Rasmus Falk. The attacking third will showcase the promising expertise of Roony Bardghji, with Mohamed Elyounoussi and Elias Achouri offering assist as vast attacking wingers.
The English Champions are in dazzling type, with a run of triumphs throughout all competitions. Their squad is at full energy, peaking with confidence as all their key gamers have recovered and are desirous to proceed their title protection within the second half of the season, as they tackle a resurgent Copenhagen.
The Pep Guardiola-led Residents are more likely to undertake an attacking 4-3-3 formation, with Ederson in purpose behind a flexible again 4. Kyle Walker and Joško Gvardiol are anticipated to function as full-backs, sustaining their spots within the lineup. The strong defensive pairing of Ruben Dias and John Stones will anchor the middle of the backline.
Rodri is to be tasked with the defensive midfielder position, teaming up with the creativity of Kevin De Bruyne and Bernardo Silva. This duo is thought for his or her versatility and talent to roam freely in the midst of the park. Phil Foden, the hat-trick hero in opposition to Brentford, will take the left aspect with Jérémy Doku on the best, and Erling Haaland spearheading the assault because the goal man.
Kevin De Bruyne
The Belgian worldwide has lit up the pitch ever since his return from a prolonged layoff final month, displaying astonishing type. He has made exceptional contributions with 7 objectives in all of his 7 outings, together with assists in his final 4 league matches.
The 32-year-old attacking midfielder’s presence within the lineup might be an added benefit for Manchester Metropolis at Parken Stadium. Excelling in his playmaking position, he might be making his first European look since final season’s closing and goals to dazzle on the event with yet one more impactful efficiency.
Copenhagen predicted lineup: Grabara; Ankersen, Diks, Vavro, Jelert; Goncalves, Falk, Claesson; Elyounoussi, Bardghji, Achouri
Manchester Metropolis predicted lineup: Ederson; Walker, Dias, Stones, Gvardiol; Silva, Rodri, De Bruyne; Doku, Haaland, Foden