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A huge night awaits us this evening. Barça are at home to Paris Saint-Germain. In other words, Messi, Neymar, Suárez, Iniesta, Xavi and co are up against a similarly star-studded side featuring the likes of Ibrahimovic,Cavani, Lavezzi, Thiago Silva and David Luiz. A fascinating winner-takes-all match with top spot in the Champions League group to play for. On the last day of the group stage, only three points will do if the Catalans want to topple the French club’s two-point lead.
PSG won 3-2 when the two sides met at the Parc des Princes earlier this year. The Parisians made their physical superiority tell, causing particular damage down the wings. With Ajax and APOEL now out of contention for the last sixteen, the prize for winning tonight is the honour of being seeded for the first knockout round, meaning a theoretically easier match-up and the advantage of playing the second leg at home.
Barça on a roll
The Catalans have won seven consecutive matches in the three major competitions and are buzzing with confidence. Luis Enrique has an almost complete squad to choose from, with only the suspended Dani Alves and Rafinha, plus the injured Vermaelen missing. The biggest question tonight therefore concerns the right-back position, where the Asturian has a number of different options to play with.
Masip, Montoya and Douglas are the three players left out of the squad announced on Wednesday morning, meaning that the definitive eighteen is as follows: Ter Stegen, Bravo, Adriano, Alba, Bartra, Mathieu, Mascherano, Piqué, Sergio, Xavi, Sergi Roberto, Iniesta, Rakitic, Pedro, Neymar Jr, Munir, Messi and Luis Suárez.
PSG are bringing plenty of well-known faces to the Catalan capital. Ibrahimovic is a former FCB payer, as are manager Laurent Blanc and Thiago Motta and Maxwell. The French champions have invested heavily to become one of the continent’s leading clubs, and are now desperate to clinch a major title to consolidate those efforts. The Camp Nou is the ideal place for PSG to send out a warning message to the rest of Europe.
[[BOTOGRIS::BARÇA V PSG IS HERE!++::http://www.fcbarcelona.com/football/first-team/detail/article/everything-you-need-to-know-about-fc-barcelona-paris-saint-germain::HOR::NF::NO-TRACKING::::::]]
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