Manchester United Must Ignore Barcelona Stats And prove their Elite Status

MANCHESTER UNITED have it all to do when they go up against Barcelona in the quarter-finals of this season’s Champions League.

Not only are Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s resurgent squad going up against the tournament favourites, they’re set to come face-to-face with a host of bogeymen.

Man Utd defied the odds to overturn a 2-0 deficit in the second-leg against Paris Saint-Germain in France last week to book their spot in the last-eight.

But they were left frustrated after they managed to pull La Liga giants Barca out of the hat.

It already looks tough for Solskjaer’s men to book their place in the semi-finals – against Liverpool or Porto – but they will face no fewer than FIVE old foes.

Over the years, Man Utd have been chasing the shadow of Lionel Messi, desperately trying to subdue Philippe Coutinho and Luis Suarez, while struggling to break down Sergio Busquets and Gerard Pique.

And it doesn’t look good based on United’s stats when faced with the star quintet over the years…

The last two times Man Utd have faced Barcelona, it has been in Champions League finals – in 2008-09 and 2010-11.

Those days, Pique, Busquets and Messi were all on the pitch as they went on to lift the trophy and force United to settle for runners-up medals.

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Messi also played United in the semi-final stage in 2007-08, with United actually edging through 1-0 on aggregate that year.

And then there’s former Liverpool duo Suarez and Coutinho – with the Uruguayan a particularly hated figure around Old Trafford.

The Barcelona forward was banned for eight games in 2011 for alleged racist comments at United fan-favourite Patrice Evra.

While Suarez has scored twice down the years against United, they will also face Coutinho – who has lost just two of his nine games against his old rivals.

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The “Little Magician” even scored a superb goal as the Reds knocked United out of the Europa League in 2015-16 – in front of a packed Old Trafford crowd no less.

It’s likely all five foes will line-up at Old Trafford on April 10, too…

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