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FC Barcelona take on Borussia Mönchengladbach on Matchday 2 of the Champions League, with Luis Enrique’s side looking to put an end to the hosts' eleven-match winning-streak and remain leaders of Group C.
Barça recorded their biggest ever win in Europe’s elite competition last time out against Celtic (7-0) but Gladbach’s solid start to the season means this will be no walk in the Borussia-Park.
Leo Messi is out with the groin injury sustained seven days ago against Atletico Madrid, as is Samuel Umtiti.
Gladbach on the other hand have a number of injury doubts going into the game: key forward man Raffael is doubtful with a groin strain, as are Mamadou Doucoure, Joel Mero and Marvin Schulz, while Josip Drmic and Alvaro Domínguez have been ruled out.
Luis Enrique spoke to the press on Tuesday, where he labelled the upcoming opponent as “fearsome” in front of their own supporters.
The boss also highlighted their speedy wide men as a potential avenue for danger: “With the ball, they know what they have to do and they play well. They can hit the wings too, because they have fast players.”
Borussia manger André Schubert spoke highly of Barça ahead of the game, describing them as “one of the best teams in the world”.
Regarding Leo Messi’s absence, the German boss said: “We would have loved to have seen him at the Borussia Park but, even without him, Barça remain a great, great side”.
Barça won their Group C opener against Celtic 7-0, while their two last away matches in the league have ended 5-1 and 5-0 in their favour against Leganés and Sporting respectively.
Mönchengladbach’s first group game did not go as planned, with Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City earning a comfortable 4-1 win. But the Germans are a different proposition when playing at their fortress, proven by the fact that they have won their last eleven home games since their last loss on 23 January earlier this year against Borussia Dortmund (1-3).
It will be the first meeting between the two sides in European competition, but Barça do not have fond memories of recent visits to Germany, having failed to win their last three matches in Germany: two defeats came against Bayern Munich while last year’s trip to Bayer Leverkusen ended 1-1.
Against teams from La Liga, things look a touch worse for Mönchengladbach. The Bundesliga outfit have managed just one victory in their last nine attempts, losing six and drawing twice. That win did, however, come in the most recent fixture – a 4-2 win against Sevilla in the group stages last season.
Worldwide TV coverage
No matter where you are in the world we have you covered. Twitter users can follow @FCBarcelona for live, minute-by-minute updates of all the action and there will be live English commentary on Radio Barça.
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