2018-19 UEFA Champions League: Quarter Finals Second Legs – Barcelona vs Manchester United

Barcelona hold a one goal lead as they welcome Manchester United to the Nou Camp for the second leg of their Champions League Quarter-Final. 

 

Team news

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Barcelona have no fresh injury concerns ahead of the second leg, with Lionel Messi available after recovering from a knock by Chris Smalling in the first leg. 

Rafinha is their only absentee with an anterior cruciate ligament injury, which he suffered in November. 

Manchester United have Aleix Sanchez available after missing the last six weeks with a knee injury. 

Nemanja Matic is also in contention after illness kept him out of Saturday’s win over West Ham. 

Ander Herrera however misses out with a thigh injury which will also keep him out of Sunday’s Premier League trip to Everton. 

Eric Bailly (concussion) and Antonio Valencia (muscular) are both sidelined for the foreseeable future. 

 

Stat Attack

  • Manchester United are winless in four trips to Barcelona (D2, L2)
  • United have scored in just one of those four trips, drawing 3-3 in November 1998. 
  • United have lost just one of their last three Champions League Quarter Final second legs, with that defeat coming away to Bayern Munich in 2013-14 season (W2, L1). 
  • Just four teams who have won a Champions League knockout first leg away from home have gone on to be eliminated from 70 such occasions. 
  • Barcelona haven’t conceded more than once at home in this competition since suffering a 3-0 defeat by eventual winners – Bayern Munich in 2012-13 season. 

 

Prediction

20 years ago, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer struck the winner as United completed the ultimate late comeback to lift the 1998-99 Champions League trophy over Bayern Munich on this very ground. 

That should be the inspiration that this current generation need never mind their victory over PSG in the last round, because if they can keep it tight and leak once before striking late with a double then they will be through on away goals. 

It however will be a tough ask against a strong Barcelona side and unfortunately, I can see a draw coming sadly rather than a dramatic late double. 

Prediction: Barcelona 1-1 Manchester United

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