In Review

Champions League last-16 first leg: Man Utd vs. PSG team news, predictions, betting odds, TV

United caretaker Ole Gunnar Solskjaer can’t wait to face the French giants

Manchester United vs. Paris Saint-Germain
  • What: Uefa Champions League round of 16 first leg 
  • When: Tuesday 12 February 
  • Where: Old Trafford, Manchester 
  • Kick-off time: 8pm 
  • TV channel: live on BT Sport 2 
  • Radio broadcast: BBC Radio 5 Live

Manchester United caretaker manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has revealed he had “goosebumps” at the prospect of taking on French giants Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League.

Solskjaer was not even in charge of United when they were drawn against PSG in the last 16 of the competition. He watched the draw from his home in Norway.

Speaking to The Daily Telegraph, he said: “I thought, ‘Wow what a challenge’. Then two or three days later suddenly it’s my challenge and I can tell you I’ve got goosebumps.”

Since replacing Jose Mourinho Solskjaer has led United on an unbeaten run which has seen the Red Devils win ten of his 11 matches in charge.

PSG will provide a tough test though in what will be the first meeting between the two clubs in the Champions League. However, PSG have been hit by injuries to star forwards Neymar and Edinson Cavani.

“It’ll be a fantastic night under the floodlights,” said Solskjaer. “The fans will be relishing it and it will be a new experience as well for PSG.”

Buffon: PSG must improve

Despite beating Bordeaux 1-0 at the weekend PSG goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon says the squad must improve their performance if they are to get a result at Old Trafford.

The Italian legend said: “I appreciated the victory but I did not like the match. We have to improve mentally and in our attitude, to have more of a spirit of sacrifice for the team.”

Team news and starting XIs

Man Utd team news

United boss Solskjaer has been given a boost after defender Victor Lindelof trained ahead of Tuesday’s clash. Marcus Rashford, who was rested for the win at Fulham on Saturday, also took part in the session.

The Manchester Evening News reports that Antonio Valencia and Matteo Darmian were not part of the 23-man open training squad. Marcos Rojo is also unavailable because of injury.

PSG team news

France World Cup star Kylian Mbappe will have to lead PSG’s attack after injuries to Neymar and Edinson Cavani.

Brazilian forward Neymar is out for ten weeks after breaking a metatarsal last month and he is expected to miss both games against United. Uruguayan forward Cavani is also out of the first leg after injuring a tendon in his hip at the weekend.

PSG coach Thomas Tuchel said: “Would Man Utd miss Pogba or Rashford? Of course. Neymar is one of our best players and one of the best players in Europe. We will miss him a lot. And now Cavani is out.

“You can’t place all the burden on Mbappe. It’s not his job to replace Cavani and Ney. He has to be free to play his game. I want us to provide him with the right kind of support. He needs to play with a good mindset and to be positive.

“We are here to score, perhaps more than one.”

PSG will also be without Thomas Meunier because of concussion but Tuchel has confirmed that Italian midfielder Marco Verratti will play at Old Trafford.

Tuchel said: “Verratti can play and will play. I’m worried because we are missing key players. For the big games in the Champions League, it is absolutely necessary to have key players with a lot of experience.”

Possible starting XIs

How the teams could line up at Old Trafford, according to the London Evening Standard

  • Man Utd possible starting XI (4-3-3): De Gea; Young, Lindelof, Jones, Shaw; Matic, Herrera, Pogba; Lingard, Rashford, Martial 
  • PSG possible starting XI (4-2-3-1): Buffon; Kehrer, Kimpembe, Silva, Bernat; Marquinhos, Verratti; Alves, Draxler, Di Maria; Mbappe
TV channel and live stream

Tuesday’s last-16 first leg clash at Old Trafford will be show live on BT Sport 2. Coverage starts at 7pm and the match kicks off at 8pm. BT Sport will also show a live stream of the match here.

Predictions

Charlie Nicholas, Sky Sports: “When this draw came out, I gave Manchester United no hope - but now, under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, I think it could go either way. The absences of Neymar and Edinson Cavani are a huge blow for PSG and a boost for United. Cavani would have caused them a tonne of problems. United must take a lead into Paris, and Paul Pogba has been in immense form. He must do it on nights like these. Charlie says: 2-2.”

London Evening Standard: “Neither side can boast an extraordinary defence, so the game will be won further up the field. PSG conceded nine goals and scored 17 in six group C games, while United scored just seven. The Red Devils only conceded four - only better by Dortmund’s two in the group stages - but have switched from Mourinho to Solskjaer since then, so expect a more expansive game from United - even if it is a first leg. Prediction: Man Utd 2-1 PSG.”

Sports Mole: “That United even have a chance of winning this match is testament to how far they have come under Solskjaer already. PSG are missing two of their main men, but they still have quality in abundance and we're backing them to come away with a draw. Prediction: Man Utd 2-2 PSG.”

Man Utd vs. PSG betting odds

Prices according to Oddschecker, as of 12 February.

Match odds
  • Man Utd to win: 5/4 
  • PSG to win: 11/5 
  • Draw: 5/2
Tie odds
  • PSG to qualify: 8/13 
  • Man Utd to qualify: 6/5
Champions League winner
  • PSG to win the Champions League: 7/1 
  • Man Utd to win the Champions League: 28/1

Uefa Champions League last-16 fixtures and TV guide

Last-16 first legs  Tuesday 12 February
  • Manchester United vs. Paris Saint-Germain (8pm, live on BT Sport 2) 
  • AS Roma vs. FC Porto (8pm, live on BT Sport 3)
Wednesday 13 February
  • Ajax vs. Real Madrid (8pm, live on BT Sport 3) 
  • Tottenham Hotspur vs. Borussia Dortmund (8pm, live on BT Sport 2)
Tuesday 19 February
  • Liverpool vs. Bayern Munich (8pm, live on BT Sport Extra) 
  • Lyon vs. Barcelona (8pm, live on BT Sport Extra)
Wednesday 20 February
  • Atlético Madrid vs. Juventus (8pm, live on BT Sport Extra) 
  • FC Schalke vs. Manchester City (8pm, live on BT Sport Extra)
Last-16 second legs  Tuesday 5 March
  • Borussia Dortmund vs. Tottenham Hotspur (8pm, live on BT Sport) 
  • Real Madrid vs. Ajax (8pm, live on BT Sport)
Wednesday 6 March
  • FC Porto vs. Roma (8pm, live on BT Sport) 
  • Paris Saint-Germain vs. Manchester United (8pm, live on BT Sport)
Tuesday 12 March
  • Juventus vs. Atlético Madrid (8pm, live on BT Sport) 
  • Manchester City vs. FC Schalke (8pm, live on BT Sport)
Wednesday 13 March
  • Barcelona vs. Lyon (8pm, live on BT Sport) 
  • Bayern Munich vs. Liverpool (8pm, live on BT Sport)

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