Manchester United are set to play Barcelona in the first-leg of the Champions League quarter-final at Old Trafford on Wednesday April 10th. The Spanish champions are many people’s favourites to win the competition this year, but United will be confident after knocking out highly-rated PSG in the last 16.
The Manchester club will have Ander Herrera, Eric Baily and Antonio Valencia all missing through injury while Nemanja Matic will have a late fitness test. Long-term absentee Alexis Sanchez is back in training but is unlikely to be risked against his former club. The Red Devils are hopeful Marcus Rashford will be fit after he returned to training on Tuesday April 9th.
Barcelona are expected to have close to a full-strength side with only Rafinha and Thomas Vermaelen out. Ousmane Dembele has recovered from the thigh injury he picked up in the 5-1 win against Lyon on March 13th.
In the pre-match press conference, according to the BBC, the Man Utd Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer admitted that it would be nearly impossible to find a plan to stop Lionel Messi.
"What kind of plan can you have to stop one of the best players in the world? This season we have played Cristiano Ronaldo at Juventus and Kylian Mbappe at PSG. Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez, they will keep our defenders on our toes so let’s see how we manage."
The Norwegian also stressed that the dramatic last gasp win against PSG in Paris in the last has given his side belief.
"The result and what we did against PSG and how we climbed the table, clawing back points, the players have given themselves and the supporters great confidence and belief we can do this," he said.