Real Madrid have endured a disappointing start to the month so far, winning just one of their three matches. Their most recent fixture saw them share the spoils with Villarreal in a goalless draw. The Spanish giants cannot afford a similar mishap when they take on Paris Saint-Germain in the first leg of Round of 16 fixture in the UEFA Champions League this Tuesday.
It is a massive game for both sides, with Real Madrid, in particular, trying to stake their claim on Kylian Mbappe next season by ousting his current club out of the UCL. PSG, themselves, are looking to convert their strong performances in domestic competitions, failing which could eventually lead to the demise of Mauricio Pochettino, come the end of the season.
PSG vs Real Madrid Preview
Mauricio Pochettino is likely to retain his 4-3-3 formation that will look to dominate possession and impose their quality in the proceedings. Pochettino has faced criticism for under-utilising Achraf Hakimi and Nuno Mendes, but that shouldn’t deter the Argentine from shifting from a four-man backline.
Carlo Ancelotti is equally stubborn when it comes to his tactical decisions. As such, the former Bayern Munich head coach could persist with his 4-3-3 setup. The team relies heavily on experience, so it could be essential for Los Blancos to dominate possession and keep PSG on the run.
PSG are likely to be boosted by the return of Neymar, but the Brazilian might not be fit to start against Real Madrid. Even Sergio Ramos may miss out against his former club due to an injury, thus joining Ander Herrera’s in the list of potential absentees.
Real Madrid could miss some big players as well, including Karim Benzema. The Frenchman is still struggling with an injury and his chances of starting against PSG remain low. He is joined by Ferland Mendy in Real Madrid’s potential list of absentees.
PSG: Donnarumma; Hakimi, Marquinhos, Kimpembe, Mendes; Verratti, Gueye, Wijnaldum; Messi, Mbappe, Di Maria
Real Madrid: Courtois; Carvajal, Nacho, Militao, Alaba; Modric, Casemiro, Kroos; Asensio, Bale, Vinicius
PSG 2-0 Real Madrid
|BT Sport 3
|FUBO TV / Paramount+
|SKY Go Italia, Mediaset Infinity