Barcelona manager Ronald Koeman has spoken about Blaugrana’s chances of winning the Champions League this season ahead of their clash with Dynamo Kyiv.
The Catalans find themselves in turbulent waters after losing their first two games of the competition. Barcelona are hanging on for dear life in the competition and need to win all their subsequent games to qualify for the knockout stages.
The Dutch manager said how Barcelona can compete in the Champions League but shouldn’t be required to win it. Here’s what he said:
“Competing, yes. But we cannot be required to win the Champions League. Recovering the injured will help us. Those who have reappeared are not yet at their highest level, but they are on the right track.”
Koeman also revealed how Dynamo Kyiv are a better side than the one Barcelona defeated in the last European campaign.
Blaugrana has struggled defensively so far, but their back-line will need to be at the top of their game to stay alive in the Champions League.
With Sergio Aguero and Philippe Coutinho back from injury, there’s a good chance they will be starting for Barcelona. The latter also scored last week in the team’s 3-1 victory against Valencia.
Memphis Depay, too, could feature in the line-up. However, Koeman more or less confirmed that Ansu Fati might not make the cut for the game against Kyiv on Wednesday. He said:
“The next game is always the most important, but we will think about the physical situation of some players. It is impossible for Ansu Fati to play three full games in seven days.”
Clement Lenglet might start the game against Kyiv despite not being fully it. He might have to fill in for Ronald Araujo and Eric Garcia, who will miss the clash because of injury and suspension, respectively.
Barcelona eyeing €70 million-rated defender among others
Recent reports suggest Juventus defender Matthijs de Ligt might be on his way away from Turin, with Chelsea and Barcelona being potential destinations.
Despite being an indispensable part of Juventus’ roster, super agent Mino Raiola has been in touch with several English clubs and Barcelona to take the Dutch defender away from Turin.
Blaugrana has been linked with several defenders over the last few months. The club has also shortlisted Chelsea’s Cesar Azpilicueta and Andreas Christensen to bolster their backline.
The duo will become free agents next season until a deal is agreed upon with the Blues. Barcelona are currently struggling with a massive financial debt and are hoping to sign as many free agents as they can, similar to what they did this summer.
It’s safe to assume that getting Azpilicueta out of a contract renewal will be an uphill task. As for the Dane, he has been in and out of Tuchel’s XI since the latter’s arrival at Stamford Bridge.
With his attacking mindset and a need to fetch more playing time for himself, Christensen might scout for greener pastures sooner rather than later.