Paris Saint-Germain's Marquinhos on the ball against Borussia Dortmund
UEFA Champions League

Champions League Preview: PSG Welcome Dortmund

Champions League Preview: PSG Welcome Dortmund

UEFA Champions League
Publish on 05/07 at 09:00 - E. DEVIN

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Paris Saint-Germain host Borussia Dortmund at the Parc des Princes this evening hoping to overturn a 1-0 first-leg deficit in their UEFA Champions League semifinal.

Niclas Füllkrug scored the only goal of the match in the first leg at the Signal Iduna Park to give the Bundesliga side the lead, and now it’s up to the 2023-24 Ligue 1 Uber Eats champions to turn the tie around at home.

PSG certainly had their chances in the first leg — both Kylian Mbappé and Achraf Hakimi hit the woodwork, and Gregor Köbel was kept busy in the Dortmund goal, but in front of the vaunted Yellow Wall, Luis Enrique’s side were unable to salvage so much as a point. To add to their worries, they also saw defender Lucas Hernandez suffer a season-ending knee injury, a massive blow to a defence which has already endured long stretches without Milan Skriniar and Nuno Mendes over the course of the season.

Despite needing to overcome a deficit, and lacking one of their key players, every word out of the PSG camp has been both confident and positive. Speaking before the match, Enrique was quick to underscore the importance of PSG's own fans, while Mbappé, speaking at an event for his charity on Sunday, was similarly confident. "We are aware of the pressure, but the squad is extremely calm. We are confident and we are sure that we will qualify for the final.”

 

To replace Hernandez, Enrique is expected to turn to January signing Lucas Beraldo. The young defender has had his wobbles at times, but has the full confidence of his manager. In attack, Enrique also has a decision to make. Gonçalo Ramos has scored nine times since the start of February domestically, but has played just five minutes in the Champions League. With his side needing goals, will the Spaniard call upon Ramos to play centrally, allowing Mbappé to be deployed in a wide role?

As for Dortmund, it should be as you were for Eden Terzic's side off the back of another impressive European campaign. With Jadon Sancho playing on the right, the Manchester United loanee gave Mendes a torrid time, and the visitors will be eager to lean on the callow pairing of the young Portuguese and Beraldo as they seek to retain their first-leg advantage.

Predicted lineups:

Paris Saint-Germain (4-3-3): Donnarumma; Hakimi, Marquinhos, Beraldo, Mendes; Zaïre-Emery, Vitinha, Ruiz; Dembélé, Ramos, Mbappé

Borussia Dortmund (4-2-3-1): Köbel; Ryerson, Hummels, Schlotterbeck, Maatsen; Can, Sabitzer; Sancho, Brandt, Adeyemi; Füllkrug

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