Top tier European football clubs FC Barcelona and Manchester United set to meet in UEFA Europa League playoffs. For more Football Predictions here!
Barcelona and Manchester United have already had 13 meetings in their history book. The Spanish side already won in the 2009 and 2011 UEFA Champions League finals, they also defeated the Red Devil in the 1991 European Cup Winners’ Cup final. The Barcelona boss Xavi Hernandez appeared six times in this classic fixture for Barcelona – they lost in the 2007/2008 semi-finals, the same year Manchester United lifted the trophy. The Premier League club side already won the UEFA Europa League trophy way back in 2017.
Barcelona vs. Manchester United
February 17, 2023, Friday, 1:45 AM (PST)
Manchester United have won each of their last five matches in Europe, a feat that they reached last 1965-1966 season. While FC Barcelona have already lost five of their 11 European matches at Camp Nou. Despite that, the Barca side will have a star to depend on in Robert Lewandowski who already scored 45 goals in the last 37 matches he played in European competition, including the nine goals he was involved in his last three appearances against top-tier English clubs.
The matchup between these European royalties will make the UEFA Europa League knockout rounds an exciting and unpredictable one. Recently, these two sides suffered a series of struggles and crises as they still both rebuilt their identity, finding chemistry within the team, although the Europa League is a sign that both clubs have fallen, this two-legged showcases the major and sincere improvement in both clubs. Xavi Hernandez has successfully adapt his brand of football to the modern era of Barcelona and that leads to the Barca side being the La Liga league-leader, whilst Erik Ten Hag made some major changes in the roster, letting go the heavy load of Cristiano Ronaldo that leads to a positive output in the second half of the season.
Manchester United will win the first leg against Barcelona 4-2.
Rashford and Casemiro will step up.
Barcelona 1.00 – Draw – 0.90 Manchester United
FT.HDP – Barcelona 0.5/1
(Odds might change without prior notice)
Xavi Hernandez said that the matchup against the newly oiled Manchester United will be a real test to the improvement of FC Barcelona, “We were not lucky in the draw; luck was not on our side. Manchester United are on a good run. It’s always a pleasure to play at Old Trafford. Ten Hag is doing a good job, they have very good players and it’s going to be really difficult to beat them.”
Predicted Starting XI
Barcelona: Ter Stegen; Kounde, Araujo, Christensen, Alba; Kessie, De Jong, Pedri; Gavi, Lewandowski, Raphinha.
Manchester United: De gea; Dalot, Varane, Shaw, Malacia; Casemiro, Fred; Bruno Fernandes; Sancho, Weghorst, Rashford.
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