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UCL Preview: Barcelona visits Bayern Munich, Man City hosts Dortmund, and more


It’s been over two years since Bayern Munich handed Barcelona its worst UEFA Champions League defeat in the club’s history, but plenty has changed between the two European clubs as they prepare for square off again on Tuesday.

Robert Lewandowski joined Barcelona this summer, ending an eight-year stay with the German giants, and heading to Spain for the first time in his career. The Polish international has kicked his Barcelona career off in style with six goals in his first five appearances, including a brace in Barca’s 5-1 Matchday 1 romp over Viktoria Plzen.

Bayern Munich has yet to suffer defeat in its opening nine matches across all competitions, downing Inter Milan 2-0 last week. Jamaal Musiala, Sadio Mane, and Leroy Sane headline the attacking options for Julian Nagelsmann, with the trio totaling 10 goals so far this summer.

Manchester City’s quest to lift a first-ever UCL trophy continues this week with Pep Guardiola’s squad hosting Borussia Dortmund at the Etihad Stadium. The Citizens rolled past Sevilla 4-0 on Matchday 1, using two goals from former Dortmund forward Erling Haaland. Dortmund downed FC Copenhagen 3-0 last week, using goals from Raphael Guerreiro, Marco Reus, and Jude Bellingham to pick up three points.

Elsewhere, Real Madrid hosts RB Leipzig at the Santiago Bernabeu while Atletico Madrid visits Bayer Leverkusen in Germany.

Here is a closer look at the top UCL matches this week:

Bayern Munich vs. Barcelona

(Tuesday, 3 p.m., TUDN/Paramount+/Univision)

Bayern Munich has defeated Barcelona in its last four head-to-head meetings, but will have to stop a familiar face in order to extend that streak on Tuesday night. Robert Lewandowski is on fire for Barcelona scoring six goals in his first five appearances for the club. Matthijs de Ligt and Lucas Hernandez will be tasked with keeping the Polish veteran from scoring at Allianz Arena while Sadio Mane and Leroy Sane are two veteran attackers on the opposite side of the field.

Barcelona is unbeaten to start its competitive schedule, winning four-consecutive matches between two different competitions. Lewandowski remains the headliner of Xavi Hernandez’s attack, but Ansu Fati and Ousmane Dembele will also be pushing to add to their four combined goals so far. Spanish youngsters Pedri and Gavi are also among the players to watch after breaking into the Barcelona first team fold.

Manchester City vs. Borussia Dortmund

(Wednesday, 3 p.m., Paramount+)

Similar to Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund will be tasked with silencing a familiar face in the form of Manchester City forward Erling Haaland.

Haaland has been on a tear since arriving in England, netting 12 goals in all competitions for Pep Guardiola’s Citizens. The Norwegian international scored twice in Man City’s 4-0 victory over Sevilla last week, helping the defending Premier League champs hand Sevilla its worst-ever home defeat in UCL play. Aymeric Laporte remains out for Man City so former Dortmund defender Manuel Akanji could partner Ruben Dias in the heart of the Citizens backline.

Borussia Dortmund suffered and up-and-down week by defeating FC Copenhagen 3-0 in UCL action before being thumped by RB Leipzig by the same scoreline in the Bundesliga. Edin Terzic is without several key first team players for Wednesday’s trip to Manchester including Thorgan Hazard, Mahmoud Dahoud, and Donyell Malen. USMNT attacker Gio Reyna assisted twice for the Black and Yellow last week and will be eager to get after his father’s former club this week.

Bayer Leverkusen vs. Atletico Madrid

(Tuesday, 3 p.m., Paramount+)

In a first meeting since the 2019 group stage, Bayer Leverkusen will square off with Atletico Madrid in Group B play.

The Bundesliga hosts have struggled of late, losing three of their last five matches, including a 1-0 road defeat at Club Brugge last week. Callum Hudson-Odoi’s arrival on loan from Chelsea has given Gerardo Seoane a new versatile option in his squad, but overall Bayer Leverkusen will be seeking more from others including Patrik Schick, Jeremie Frimpong, and Keres Demirbay.

Atletico Madrid used a late winning goal from Antoine Griezmann to edge FC Porto 2-1 last week. Diego Simeone’s men followed that result up with a 4-1 hammering of Celta Vigo in La Liga action, with Angel Correa, Rodrigo De Paul, and Yannick Carrasco all getting on the scoresheet. Atletico will be tough to break down, especially with Jan Oblak between the posts and Mario Hermoso headlining the defense.

Real Madrid vs. RB Leipzig

(Wednesday, 3 p.m., UniMas, TUDN, Paramount+) 

RB Leipzig suffered one of its worst Champions League defeats on home soil last week and now faces a trip to defending UCL winners Real Madrid on Matchday 2.

Marco Rose replaced Domenico Tedesco as RB Leipzig manager and led the Bundesliga side to a 3-0 victory over his former club, Borussia Dortmund on Saturday. Scoring three goals at the Bernabeu will be a tougher task for RB Leipzig on Wednesday, but Timo Werner, Christopher Nkunku, and Dominik Szoboszlai are a dynamic group of talented forwards. The trio has six goals in all competitions so far this summer.

Real Madrid is 7-0-0 in all competitions this summer, most recently downing Mallorca 4-1 in La Liga action. Karim Benzema remains sidelined following his injury at Celtic last week, but Carlo Ancelotti still has plenty of attacking talent to call upon. Vinicius Junior, Rodrygo, and Eden Hazard will all be pushing to lead the line at home this week while defenders Antonio Ruddier and Federico Valverde are both coming off goalscoring performances at the weekend.

Here is a full schedule of this week’s UCL Matches:

**All matches are 3 p.m. ET unless stated otherwise


Sporting Lisbon vs. Tottenham – 12:45 p.m.

Viktoria Plzen vs. Inter Milan – 12:45 p.m.

Bayer Leverkusen vs. Atletico Madrid

Bayern Munich vs. Barcelona

FC Porto vs. Club Brugge

Liverpool vs. Ajax

Marseille vs. Eintracht Frankfurt


AC Milan vs. Dinamo Zagreb – 12:45 p.m.

Shakhtar Donetsk vs. Celtic – 12:45 p.m.

Chelsea vs. Red Bull Salzburg

FC Kobenhaven vs. Sevilla

Juventus vs. Benfica

Maccabi Haifa vs. Paris Saint-Germain

Manchester City vs. Borussia Dortmund

Rangers vs. Napoli

Real Madrid vs. RB Leipzig


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