Marc-Andre ter Stegen is set to return after an injury layoff while Pedri could replace Lionel Messi when Barcelona face off against Dynamo Kyiv on Wednesday.
Barcelona will be aiming to take a step closer to sealing a place in the knockout stages of the UEFA Champions League when they lock horns with Ukrainian giants Dynamo Kyiv at Camp Nou.
Ahead of the game, the Catalans have been handed a huge fitness boost as first-choice goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen is back in training after a lengthy layoff due to a knee injury.
Speaking of the German international in his pre-match press conference (h/t Barca Blaugranes), manager Ronald Koeman said, “He joined the group almost a week ago. He seems really good. He’s been out for a little while now but he’s back and working well.”
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German international ter Stegen is likely to walk back into the starting XI against Kyiv on Wednesday, replacing Neto between the sticks. With Samuel Umtiti and Ronald Araujo still injured, Koeman is likely to stick with the centre-back partnership of Gerard Pique and Clement Lenglet once again.
But there should be changes in the full-back slots, with Sergino Dest expected to start at right-back, while Junior Firpo could get a rare opportunity on the left, with Jordi Alba likely to be given a breather by the manager.
Sergio Busquets is also expected to be rested against a depleted Dynamo Kyiv side, keeping an eye on the weekend league game against Real Betis. In his stead, summer signing Miralem Pjanic ought to get the nod alongside Frenkie de Jong in the midfield double pivot.
Philippe Coutinho, who has started the season strongly, remains sidelined with an injury. And considering that Lionel Messi has played in each game so far this term, Wednesday could be a good occasion to rest the Argentine superstar. So, we can expect teenage sensation Pedri to slot in as the No. 10 for the hosts against Kyiv.
Francisco Trincao is pushing for a starting berth on the wings, but Koeman is likely to stick with Ousmane Dembele and Ansu Fati, who has been on fire of late in the wide attacking roles on Wednesday. Spearheading the attack for Barcelona should be Antoine Griezmann, who was on the score sheet this past weekend against Deportivo Alaves.
Barcelona Predicted XI: ter Stegen; Dest, Pique, Lenglet, Firpo; Pjanic, de Jong; Dembele, Pedri, Fati; Griezmann.