Champions League Semi Finals – 2nd Leg Preview and Expected Lineups

One last midweek before the grand finale! After the closely contested first legs, the final four will battle it out one more time to determine the two clubs that will reach the final in Istanbul. So let’s take a closer look at the upcoming top clashes in our full preview for the second leg of the Champions League semi finals, in addition to expected lineups (as per

Manchester City – PSG

It was an awkward contest at the Parc des Princes. Paris Saint Germain were by far the better side in the opening half, and they were rewarded with the opener for their efforts.

Nonetheless, Manchester City found their feet after the break and suddenly became the dominant side as the hosts lost steam. However, they had to rely on two comical goals – especially the first one – to overturn the result, whilst the French side played a with man down after Idrissa Gueye’s dismissal.

Pep Guardiola should opt for the same 4-2-3-1 formation he deployed last week, with Bernardo Silva, Phil Foden, Riad Mahrez and Kevin De Bruyne unleashed up front. Rodri and Ilkay Gundogan should take the double pivot roles, whilst Ruben Dias and John Stones should operate at the heart of the defense.

On the other hand, Mauricio Pochettino will also go for a similar tactical lineup. Although Kylian Mbappé is doubtful to start, the young star is most likely to lead the attack supported by Angel Di Maria, Marco Verratti and Neymar. Danilo should replace the suspended Gueye alongside Leandro Paredes in the middle.

The Ligue 1 champions have uphill battle in front of them in the semi finals, but it must be noted, that they proved to be excellent in earning great results away from in the previous stages of Champions League, namely against Barcelona and Bayern Munich.

Can the Frenchmen complete a remarkable comeback? Or will the Englishmen finish off what they had previously started?

Manchester City: Ederson; Walker, Stones, Rúben Dias, Cancelo; Rodri, Gündoğan; Mahrez, Bernardo Silva, Foden; De Bruyne
Out: Eric García (illness)
Doubtful: none

Paris: Navas; Florenzi, Marquinhos, Kimpembe, Diallo; Danilo, Paredes; Di María, Verratti, Neymar; Mbappé
Out: Gueye (suspended), Bernat (knee)
Doubtful: Mbappé (calf), Dagba (ankle)

Chelsea – Real Madrid 

If the previously mentioned Semi finals encounter was a close one, then these two former Champions League winners were inseparable last week. Chelsea surprisingly took the lead early on in the first leg via Christian Pulisic, but Karim Benzama expertly brought Real Madrid back on level terms.

While the first half was a thrilling one, the second paled in comparison, as the two teams almost implicitly agreed to let their second leg battle be the decisive one.

Thomas Tuchel will maintain his 3-4-3 formation, with Kai Havertz expected to replace the misfiring Timo Werner up front. The young German should be supported by Mason Mount and Christian Pulisic, with Jorginho and N’Golo Kanté in the engine room. Cesar Azpilicueta and Ben Chilwell should play in the wingback roles.

For his part, Zinedine Zidane will be without several defensive options, including Raphael Varane and Dani Carvajal. Nonetheless, captain Sergio Ramos is expected to make his return alongside Militao in defense. Karim Benzema should spearhead the attack, supported by Marco Asensio and Vinicius.

The Blues will have the home-court advantage, as well as staring the match ahead thanks to the away-goal rule. So will they be able to capitalize on it? Or will the Spanish champions once again showcase their almost-unparalleled experience at this stage?

Chelsea: Mendy; Christensen, Thiago Silva, Rüdiger; Azpilicueta, Jorginho, Kanté, Chilwell; Mount, Havertz, Pulišić
Out: none
Doubtful: Kovaçič (hamstring)

Real Madrid: Courtois; Valverde, Ramos, Militão, Nacho; Casemiro, Kroos, Modrić; Asensio, Benzema, Vinícius
Out: Carvajal (hamstring), Vázquez (knee)
Doubtful: Mendy (calf), Varane (thigh)

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