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Champions League Preview: United vs PSG, Roma vs Porto: Where to watch, timing, possible XI

Manchester United is up against an injury-ravaged Paris Saint Germain

Old Trafford, February 12: The UEFA Champions League knockout stages begin with Manchester United hosting Paris Saint-Germain and Porto going to Roma in the first leg of the round of 16 games.

Meanwhile Real Madrid, confident after six wins and one draw from its last seven games across all competitions, visit Ajax on Wednesday, when the Spanish side will hope to record their seventh successive win over the Dutch club. Also Wednesday, Tottenham host Bundesliga leader Borussia Dortmund.

1. United vs PSG

1. United vs PSG

When Jose Mourinho was fired in December, it looked like Manchester United could need to win the Champions League as the only way to qualify for the tournament next season. But Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has reignited United's top-four challenge since being appointed manager until the end of the season. Lifting the European Cup, just as Solskjaer did as a player with United in 1999, would make it hard for the club not to hand the job to the Norwegian on a permanent basis.


United were 11 points off fourth place when Mourinho was fired, but the side has only dropped two points since then, and beat Fulham 3-0 on Saturday. PSG coach Thomas Tuchel has a major dilemma with star forwards Neymar and Edinson Cavani both out injured. Tuchel has to decide whether to pair French league top-scorer Kylian Mbappe with the ineffective Eric-Maxim Choupo-Moting - who has scored only one goal in 12 league matches and was poor in Saturday's 1-0 win over Bordeaux - in a 4-4-2 against United.


Tuchel could push Julian Draxler further up in a 4-5-1, with Draxler effectively operating as a playmaker behind Mbappe. Draxler could also find himself in a central midfield role if Marco Verratti is unable to play against United. Verratti only just returned from a sprained ankle and played about an hour of the game against Bordeaux. If Verratti doesn't play, Tuchel is likely to put central defender Marquinhos as one of his two holding midfielders along with either Draxler or the newly signed Leandro Paredes.

2. Roma vs Porto

2. Roma vs Porto

The trip to Rome should hold no fear for Porto after an impressive campaign so far. Group D winner Porto are undefeated in the Champions League since losing to Liverpool in the first leg of last season's round of 16, while they haven't lost in the Portuguese league since a 1-0 defeat at Benfica in October. Porto have won their last five Champions League matches to match a club record and claimed 16 points - more than any other team - in the group phase. Roma had a seven-game winning European run at the Stadio Olimpico until it was ended by a 2-0 defeat to Madrid in Group G.

3. Possible Lineups:

3. Possible Lineups:

Manchester United: De Gea; Young, Lindelof, Jones, Shaw; Matic, Herrera, Pogba; Lingard, Rashford, Martial.

PSG: Buffon; Kehrer, Kimpembe, Silva, Bernat; Marquinhos, Verratti; Alves, Draxler, Di Maria; Mbappe.

Roma: Mirante; Karsdorp, Marcano, Jesus, Kolarov; Zaniolo, Nzonzi, Cristante; El Shaarawy, Dzeko, Kluivert.

Porto: Casillas; Militao, Felipe, Pepe, Telles; Pereira, Torres, Herrera; Otavio, Soares, Brahimi.

4. Telecast details

4. Telecast details

United vs PSG: Match will be live on Sony Ten 2 and Sony Ten 2 HD in India from 1.30 AM (Wednesday) IST. It will be streamed live on Sony Liv, Airtel TV and Jio TV's official app.

Roma vs Porto: The match will be telecasted live on Sony Ten 1 and Sony Ten 1/HD in India from 1.30 AM (Wednesdy) IST. It will be streamed live on Jio TV's official app and Sony Liv and Airtel TV official app.

 
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Story first published: Tuesday, February 12, 2019, 11:58 [IST]
Other articles published on Feb 12, 2019
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