Man to man! Players to watch as Barcelona face Liverpool at Nou Camp

It will be a mouth-watering match to watch, a final before the finals where everyone expects nothing less of last years finals between title holders Real Madrid and Liverpool.

Liverpool takes on Barcelona at the Nou Camp on Wednesday as they continue their bid to reach a second Champions League final in two years in a row.

In doing so, they will be returning to the scene of their famous last-16 victory against Barca on 2007, when goals from John Arne Riise and Craig Bellamy helped the Reds through to the quarter-final.

In midfield for Frank Rijkaard’s team, that night was Spain and Barca legend Xavi, who was withdrawn after 65 minutes in what turned out to be a rare forgettable European season for the World Cup winner.

Xavi went on to win the Champions League four times with Barcelona. The Nou Camp legend, now playing for Al Sadd in Qatar, looks at five key battles where tonight’s game can be won or lost.

Pique vs Salah

Despite his sunsetting age, the form of Pique in the last few months has shown why he is still the best central defender in the world. Salah will be one of the biggest tests he has had this season and the defender will have to get prepared to race it down with the fast Egyptian.

He is now a player who would get into any team in the world and I am sure that Pique is not going to get an easy night considering the pace Salah gives his opponents.

Busquets Vs Firmino

Busquets is the best at what he does you only have to read the recognition opponents have for him. He is so important for Barcelona and will be so important at keeping Liverpool ’s creative midfield players quiet.

He will look to control the game for Barcelona but players like Firmino can create something out of nothing in the midfield where all the show will start and end.

Suarez Vs Virgil Van Dijk

Van Dijk has been voted and awarded as the best defender in England this season and one of the best in Europe tasked with containing attackers from reaching their target.

Suarez has the talent but he is also up for the physical side of the game if he needs to be as well. These are both players on such good form will be one of the most interesting battles of the evening.

Alba Vs Mane

Alba has so much experience in big games for both Barcelona and Spain and he is going to need to use all of that experience to silence Mane who at times runs out of controls.

Mane has been playing at the same level as Salah this season and his pace and his goal-scoring ability make him so dangerous danger to the Liverpool squad where Alba will be tasked with marking him.

Messi Vs Allison

Nothing has changed. Messi is still the best player on the planet and the greatest of all time. This season he is doing incredible things and showing such hunger although he lacks competition in fighting for goal scoring in the league since Ronaldo moved to Italy.

Alisson is a very good goalkeeper and is going to have to produce one of his best performances if he wants to stop Messi but I am not sure that is possible with the way he has been playing.

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