Barcelona predicted lineup vs Shakhtar Donetsk – Gundogan key for injury-ravaged Barca

Barcelona predicted lineup vs Shakhtar Donetsk as the Catalans play their final game before El Clasico. After early exits in each of the last two seasons, Xavi’s team are in a much kinder group this year and will move onto 9 points should they win this.

That would leave them already on the brink of securing qualification. Shakhtar and Porto are currently level on 3 points behind them though so any slip-up for Barca in this match would make this group a whole lot more interesting at the midway stage.

Barcelona predicted lineup vs Shakhtar Donetsk
Credit: Pressinphoto / Icon Sport

Barcelona predicted lineup vs Shakhtar Donetsk

Barcelona vs Shakhtar Donetsk UEFA Champions League team news

Barcelona are currently dealing with a pretty extensive injury crisis with six players sidelined. Sergi Roberto and Jules Kounde are furthest away from a return and won’t play here or at the weekend against Real Madrid.

The likes of Pedri, Frenkie de Jong, Robert Lewandowski and Raphinha are closer to fitness, although this game is likely to come too soon for four players who were regulars last term.

Barca are having to make use of their squad and young players as a result and one was their saviour at the weekend with 17 year old Marc Guiu scoring 23 seconds into his debut as Xavi’s team defeated Athletic Club 1-0.

Barcelona predicted lineup

Ter Stegen, Alonso, Christensen, Araujo, Cancelo, Gundogan, Romeu, Fermin, Felix, Ferran Torres, Lamine Yamal

Barcelona predicted lineup
Marc Guiu of FC Barcelona drives the ball during a match vs Athletic Club on October 22, 2023 – Photo by SUSA/Icon sport

Barcelona key players – Our top three

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Ilkay Gundogan – A star on the UCL stage

With so many key players out, Barcelona will need their experienced players to show up on Wednesday. One of those is unquestionably Ilkay Gundogan who frequently starred on Champions League nights during his time in Manchester.

He has made a mostly positive start to life at his new club too with 2 assists in 2 Champions League matches since joining Barca. He has a passing accuracy of 94.2% in this season’s competition so far which betters even his most successful UCL season for City in that metric.

Ronald Araujo
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Ronald Araujo – The Uruguayan spearheading Barca’s defence

Barcelona are dependent on Ronald Araujo in defence. The Uruguayan brings both leadership and physical qualities which nicely complement the rest of this back four. He’ll be particularly important over the coming weeks with Jules Kounde currently sidelined.

Shakhtar have options in terms of who their central striker will be in this game. Araujo may find himself up against Danylo Sikan, although Kevin Kelsy is an alternative option.

Joao Felix for Barca
SUSA / Icon Sport

Joao Felix – Enjoying life in Barcelona

Joao Felix will be expected to provide much of the creative threat for Barcelona. He’s certainly looking more at home in Barca colours than was the case in Madrid and made a flying start with two goals and an assist in his new team’s last Champions League home game against Antwerp.

Felix now has 3 goals and 3 assists in 9 appearances so far for the Catalans in all competitions after he set up Marc Guiu for the winner at the weekend.

Will Robert Lewandowski play against Shakhtar Donetsk?

Robert Lewandowski has been sidelined for several weeks and has not recovered in time to be part of the squad for this game.

As a result, Ferran Torres should lead the line again and he did net the winner after replacing the injured Pole in Barca’s last Champions League game at Porto.

Barcelona predicted lineup vs Shakhtar Donetsk – The Final Word

Barcelona will be hoping to get through this game unscathed and with three points given they welcome Real Madrid less than 72 hours later in La Liga.

We probably shouldn’t expect any fireworks from them here given those key absentees but they should still have enough to get the job done even with a weakened eleven.

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