The UEFA Champions League resumes on Tuesday night as Sporting Lisbon welcome Manchester City at the Estádio José Alvalade, while Paris Saint-Germain and Real Madrid lock horns at Parc des Princes in the first round of 16 encounters.
Sporting goes into the game as underdogs, having qualified to the knockout stages through a better goal difference than Borussia Dortmund in Group C. They take on a City side that is in unbelievable form, having last tasted defeat back in December against RB Leipzig, in the Champions League.
The Portuguese outfit will be out to cause an upset by ensuring that they at least get a result against the Premier League champions. Pep Guardiola’s side is yet to win the prestigious competition, having fallen short in last years’ final after losing 1-0 to Chelsea. Despite that, City are still favorites to lift the trophy this season.
The star-studded fixture between PSG and Madrid will see both teams looking to have an upper hand in the first leg tie. The likes of Lionel Messi and Neymar will be out to run it back against Madrid, having caused problems against them previously. Achraf Hakimi will have an opportunity to face his former club after they let him go on a number of loan spells, before eventually selling him permanently to Inter Milan. Les Parisiens came knocking for his signature this season, and the Morrocian has since been at his best. Hakimi is amongst the best full-backs in the world and will be out to make a statement, alongside goalkeeper, Keylor Navas, who had his fair share of great success with the Spanish giants.
Another former player that would hope to feature on this first leg encounter is one of the most successful players to dawn the shirt of Los Blancos, former captain, Sergio Ramos. The 35-year-old signed for the French giants as a free agent this season. Ramos has been ruled out due to injury, but is expected to make his historic return at the Santiago Bernabeu, this time not as their leader, but as their fierce rival.
Amid rumors of Kylian Mbappe having allegedly agreed to join Madrid on a free transfer at the end of the season, the 23-year-old will look to produce his best performance, either to prove his level commitment to his current club supporters or to win the hearts of his potential future supporters.
Both matches are scheduled to kick off at 22:00.