Napoli will host Barcelona in today’s UEFA Champions League first-leg tie game between the two sides at San Paolo Stadium.
Barcelona are in good form coming out a 5-0 win against Eibar over the weekend with Lionel Messi scoring for of those goals in the La Liga match, putting Barcelona on top of the table.
This will be the first time that Barcelona manager Quique Setien leads his team in the UEFA Champions League and the Italian hosts are not going to be a walkover in this first leg match up.
Napoli have already defeated Juventus and Inter Milan thanks to new manager Genarro Gattuso who took over from Carlo Ancelotti last year. Since then he has strengthened the team into a formidable powerhouse.
With Koulibaly out for most of the season, Maksimovic seems the most likely replacement in today’s match. Llorente, Hysaj and Milik are doubtful for Napoli in today’s match.
Barcelona will be without Luis Suarez, Jordi Alba, Dembele and Sergi Roberto who are still recovering from injury.
Barcelona are expected to use a 4-3-3 formation opting for the following line up :
Ter Stegen; Semedo, Piqué, Lenglet, Firpo; De Jong, Busquets, Arthur; Messi, Griezmann, Vidal.
Napoli will probably follow the same formation with the following players in their predicted line-up:
Meret; Di Lorenzo, Manolas, Maksimovic, Mário Rui; Fabián, Demme, Zielinski; Callejón, Mertens, Insigne
With both teams coming into this encounter off recent strong runs, it looks like the game will be close with Barcelona’s only advantage being their previous friendly game experience over Napoli.