FC Barcelona will be playing against PSG while Manchester City will be hosting AS Roma on the match day 2 of the Champions League and here, we list down 5 things to look forward to in UCL on Tuesday.
The UEFA Champions League returns on this Tuesday and we have plenty of mouth watering clashes to look forward to. French champions Paris Saint Germain will be hosting tournament favorites FC Barcelona, Chelsea will be going to Portugal to play against Sporting while English Champions Manchester City will be hosting dangerous looking AS Roma at the Etihad Stadium. We have listed down 5 things to look forward to on Tuesday in the Europe’s elite club competition.
1. AS Roma’s Chance To Mark Their Arrival On Big Stage
AS Roma were struggling for a right direction when James Palotta took the reins of the capital club. And the fortunes of Roma have changed in such a dramatic way in past few months that the club now looks ready to mark its arrival as a giant of European football.
AS Roma have made an excellent start to their season as they sit jointly at the top of Serie A while they also made a spectacular re-entry in UCL by beating CSKA 5-1. Now, Rudi Garcia’a men have a bigger test ahead of them as they visit Manchester City on Tuesday.
Manuel Pelligrini’s Manchester City are looking in good form at the moment and new looking midfield trio of Keita, Pjanic and Nainggolan will have to play a key role if they want a positive result in the absence to Daniele Di Rossi. But if Roma win this crucial away game then it will mark as their arrival on the grander stage of European football.
2. FC Barcelona’s First Real Test Of The Season
Wholesome changes were made in the squad of FC Barcelona during the summer transfer window and the club was not expected to hit the ground running immediately after the start of new season. But Luis Enrique’s men have surprised everybody by leading the La Liga table in the early stages and the new arrivals like Ivan Rakitic, Jeremy Mathieu and Claudio Bravo have fit in quite seamlessly into the team.
The Catalans will be playing against French champions PSG on Tuesday and it will be a first real test of both, FC Barcelona and new coach Luis Enrique.
With the exception of Malaga in La Liga, FC Barcelona have brushed aside every challenge quite comfortably so far but PSG is a much stronger club and it will be interesting to see how Luis Enrique approaches this first big test of his managerial career at Camp Nou.
3. Athletic Bilbao’s Chance To Change Their Fortunes After An Underwhelming Start To The Season
Athletic Bilbao qualified for the UEFA Champions League for the first time after 1998-99 after beating Napoli in the qualifying round. But the Basques have made an underwhelming start to their new season as they have won only one game out of their last 6 competitive fixtures.
Athletic Bilbao enjoyed a fine 2013-14 season as they finished fourth in the La Liga but they have got only four points to their name till date and they also failed to win against Shakhtar in their opening game of the Champions League.
But now, Ernesto Velverde’s men have a great chance to register their first win of the competition when they go to Borisov to play against BATE on Tuesday. Ander Herrera’s departure to Manchester United have caused a big hole in the midfield of Bilbao and Velverde will be hoping that it doesn’t create too many problems in a game against BATE.
4. Xabi Alonso Eager To Prove His Real Worth To Real Madrid
Real Madrid splashed huge cash on new signings like James Rodriguez and Toni Kroos in the summer and they sold the likes of Angel di Maria, Xabi Alonso and Alvaro Morata to free some funds. The Los Blancos have been criticized for their dealings during the transfer window and Xabi Alonso would be keen to prove his class to his former employers.
Xabi Alonso signed for Bayern Munich in a deal worth 10 million euros and he has fit in seamlessly into the system of former Barcelona boss Pep Guardiola. Alonso has completed more passes than any other Bayern Munich player in the Bundesliga so far and he will be very eager to continue his good run of form in their game against CSKA Moscow.
The Bavarians are part of a Group of Death and Manchester City and AS Roma are the other two clubs of their group. Guardiola will be hoping for a stellar performance from Alonso to earn priceless away win and boost their chances of progressing into the knockout stages as group winners.
5. Chelsea Eager To Prove They Are Serious Contenders For The Title
Chelsea were arguably the biggest winners of summer transfer window in Europe as they made some smart signings of Cesc Fabregas, Diego Costa and Felipe Luis.
The Blues are at the top of Premier League table at the moment but experts across continent still consider them behind the likes of FC Barcelona, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich in a race to win the Champions League. But if their recent performances have anything to go by, Chelsea look capable enough to lift the trophy again after 2012.
A top quality performance by Chelsea against Sporting on Tuesday will force the other big guns to take the note of Blues.