The Champions League is back! Kicking off the return of the best-of-the-best tournament will be two of soccer’s greatest squads: Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain. Celebrate Valentine’s Day (and your love for soccer) by tuning into this game!
After a brief pause, the Champions League has returned for its first fixtures of 2017! The Round of 16 sees the best of the group stages advance to a two-game playoff, so whoever scores big in this Feb. 14 match will have the much-needed momentum. Barcelona will take the trip to Parc des Prince in beautiful Paris, France to meet Paris Saint-Germain on their home turf. The game kicks off at 2:45 PM ET so make sure you watch every moment.
The Blaugrana and Les Rouge-et-Bleu are both chasing down their fiercest competition in their respective domestic leagues. Barcelona is on the heels of Real Madrid in La Liga, while PSG is trying to unseat AS Monaco FC from the top of France Ligue 1’s table. While both teams would love to claim the UEFA Champions League trophy, winning at home would be just as sweet (if not sweeter.) Monaco will have their hands full with Manchester City in the Round of 16, while Los Blancos play Napoli.
PSG will have a pair of new weapons in their arsenal for this match: Julian Draxler, the 23-year-old player, formerly of Liverpool. He joined the club during the January transfer window, according to ESPN FC, and many see it as the best move made during this trade period. Along with Julian, Goncalo Guedes, 20, moves over from Benefica to join the ranks of the Parisians.
While PSG is adding to their ranks, Barcelona may have suffered a major loss before this game. Javier Mascherano, 32, a Barca defender, suffered a left thigh injury during a Copa del Rey semifinal clash with Atletico Madrid, according to Goal.com. While initial reports didn’t state the extent of the injury, he’s reportedly going to be sidelined for 2-3 weeks, meaning he’s likely to miss this match. If that wasn’t bad enough, PSG is motivated to prove they are no underdogs.
“Barcelona are the favorites, that much is obvious,” Thiago Motta, 34, former Barca player and current PSG member, said ahead of this match, per Marca. “However, we have played against them many times and we know what they can do and it is an opportunity for us to reach the quarter-final. They are going to be two very difficult matches but it will undoubtedly be hard for them as well.”
Who do you want to win this match, HollywoodLifers? Do you thin PSG will advance to the next round? Do you think Barcelona will take the Champions League title this year?