As the UEFA Champions League resumes on Tuesday with Europe’s biggest clubs going head-to-head in the group stage of the competition, which will be the last to be played in this format, one team is ready to put behind the poor performances of last season and even do better this time around.
FC Barcelona finished third in a group with Bayern Munich, Inter Milan, and Viktoria Plzen last season and dropped into the UEFA Europa League, where they lost to Manchester United.
Overall, it was a poor European campaign for the club that eventually went on to win the La Liga last season. However, Barcelona has started the 2023/2024 season on a better note, remaining unbeaten after five games and only dropping points once, which was on the season’s opening weekend.
Barcelona manager Xavi has stated that the players are ready and enthusiastic about the new campaign that has seen them dropped into the same group with Belgian side Royal Antwerp, Porto, and Shakhtar Donestk.
“The players are very enthusiastic, but we must not have an obsession. We must be ourselves and impose our personality. The goal for now is to pass the group stage; then, we will talk. Last year, in Europe, we were good in terms of play but not in results. Now we have strengthened ourselves, and we have to show that we can compete and fight for it.” Xavi said.
Barcelona will face Royal Antwerp in their first UEFA Champions League group-stage game for this season on Tuesday, just days after securing a 5-0 victory over Real Betis in La Liga.
Official Barcelona UCL Squad List:
Marc-Andre ter Stegen, Inaki Pena Sotorres, Ander Astralaga
Jules Kounde, Andreas Christensen, Alejandro Balde, Joao Cancelo, Inigo Martinez, Marcos Alonso, Sergi Roberto.
Frenkie de Jong, Gavi, Ilkay Gundogan, Oriol Romeu, Fermin Lopez, Marc Casado.
Robert Lewandowski, Raphinha, Ferran Torres, Lamine Yamal, Joao Felix.
Daniel Ademiju Idowu