Lyon v Barcelona Tips: Can Lyon’s press provide a first-leg shock?
Champions League draw specialists Lyon may have escaped from Group F undefeated, but tonight’s visit of Barcelona poses a much tougher task.
The Catalan club are bidding for their 12th quarter-final appearance in a row. By contrast, Lyon haven’t gone beyond the last-16 stage since the days of John Carew and Sylvain Wiltord.
Can the La Liga side keep that run going? Or will the hosts spring a first-leg shock?
Bruno Genesio’s men are no slouches in Europe, though. The Ligue 1 side drew five of their six matches in the group stages, including a 2-2 stalemate at home to Manchester City.
Barcelona’s back line isn’t exactly watertight. They’ve conceded in each of their Champions League matches so far this term and will face another tough task against Lyon’s high pressing game.
Highly rated youngster Tanguy NDombele will lead the charge for the hosts. He’ll line-up alongside Lucas Tousart and Houssem Aouar in a midfield three.
Forward Moussa Dembele already has one CL goal against Barca for Celtic. The 22-year-old will be key alongside Memphis Depay and Bertrand Traore.
Lionel Messi carries the obvious threat for Barca, who boast one of the competition’s deadliest front lines, although it’s behind the Argentine where the game could be won and lost.
Arturo Vidal and Sergio Busquets aren’t getting any younger. Any mistakes they make against Lyon’s press will give the hosts a solid chance of a surprise first-leg advantage.
Lyon’s task is made much harder by the absence of Nabil Fekir through suspension. 11/5 shot Moussa Dembele will shoulder the goalscoring burden while the Frenchman is missing.
Where: Groupama Stadium
How to watch: BT Sport 3
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