Messi vs Ronaldo, Man Utd, Haaland: Champions League Storylines To Watch

Ecu soccer is reeling with stadiums in large part empty and revenues down, however it’s trade as standard at the box for the continent’s greatest golf equipment this week because the Champions League team degree will get underway and Bayern Munich start their defence of the trophy. Hansi Flick’s all-conquering group have a glamour tie to get issues going, at house to Diego Simeone’s Atletico Madrid on Wednesday. Sooner than that, on Tuesday, Paris Saint-Germain go back to the contest following their defeat by means of Bayern in final season’s ultimate as they tackle Manchester United.

AFP Game selections out probably the most storylines to observe over the following few weeks:

Messi vs Ronaldo

They’re the 2 biggest avid gamers in their era with 11 Ballons d’Or between them, and the 2 best scorers in Champions League historical past. Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo at the moment are set to resume their particular person contention when Barcelona and Juventus conflict in Crew G.

They’ve now not confronted off because the Portuguese celebrity left Actual Madrid for Juventus in 2018.

Ronaldo is recently self-isolating after checking out sure for Covid-19 and can want to move a destructive check prior to being allowed to function towards Barca in Turin on October 28. The go back on the Camp Nou is on December Eight.

Each side must advance from a bunch additionally containing Dynamo Kiev and Ferencvaros, however each Messi and Ronaldo are working out of time to win the Champions League once more. Messi, now 33, has featured in 4 victorious campaigns, whilst 35-year-old Ronaldo has gained it 5 instances.

Will Guy Utd get out in their team?

Manchester United start their marketing campaign at Paris Saint-Germain in a repeat in their dramatic last-16 assembly in 2018-19, when the Pink Devils stepped forward due to a debatable past due penalty.

That used to be arguably the top level of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s reign as Outdated Trafford supervisor. It used to be his 14th win in 17 video games as caretaker, and shortly after he were given the process completely. However United went out to Barcelona within the quarter-finals and didn’t qualify for final season’s Champions League.

Solskjer’s first complete marketing campaign in fee noticed United end 0.33 to go back to Europe’s most sensible desk, however critical doubts stay about his managerial skill and they’re in a tricky team, with final season’s semi-finalists RB Leipzig and the Turkish champions, Istanbul Basaksehir, in addition to PSG.

The knives will likely be out for the Norwegian in the event that they fail to make the knockout degree.

Haaland to superstar once more?

Erling Braut Haaland used to be the superstar of final season’s Champions League prior to the contest used to be interrupted by means of the coronavirus pandemic.

The Norwegian used to be a sensation for Pink Bull Salzburg within the team degree, scoring 8 instances. After shifting to Borussia Dortmund within the iciness he scored two extra within the defeat of PSG within the final 16, first leg, even supposing Dortmund ended up dropping on mixture.

In general Haaland scored 44 membership targets final season, all prior to turning 20 in July. He already has 11 this season for membership and nation and Dortmund will hope he can assist them out of a bunch additionally containing Zenit Saint Petersburg, Lazio and Membership Brugge.

Atalanta: Darkish horses not more

Atalanta’s run to the quarter-finals, the place they suffered an agonising defeat to PSG, would were heartwarming even had it now not coincided with their house town of Bergamo being devastated throughout the primary wave of the coronavirus pandemic.

Gian Piero Gasperini’s aspect certified for the final 16 in spite of dropping their first 3 team video games after which beat Valencia Eight-Four on mixture of their debut Champions League marketing campaign. In addition they completed 0.33 in Serie A to go back to Europe’s elite membership pageant.

However Atalanta are now not a wonder package deal and are most probably now favourites to advance from their team together with Liverpool, and forward of Ajax and the Danish champions, Midtjylland. Will they proceed to thrive in spite of now not being the darkish horses?

The debutants

Atalanta would possibly now not be the brand new boys however 4 groups are showing within the team degree for the primary time.


Probably the most fascinating first-timers are Rennes, who had a best-ever third-place end in France a yr on from profitable the French Cup. In Julien Stephan they’ve certainly one of Europe’s preferrred younger coaches, whilst midfielder Eduardo Camavinga is most likely the freshest younger prospect in international soccer. They’re in a hard team, regardless that, with Chelsea, Sevilla and any other newcomer in Russian aspect Krasnodar.

Midtjylland can have it difficult up towards Liverpool, Atalanta and Ajax. In the meantime, after breaking apart the dominance of the Istanbul giants in Turkey, Basaksehir will hope to reason issues for PSG, Manchester United and Leipzig.

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