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Barcelona Seek Redemption While PSG to Consolidate

French champions PSG have yet to lose in this campaign despite rarely performing anywhere near their free-flowing best from last season. However, they were outstanding in defeating Barcelona 3-2 three weeks ago and are fresh from a 3-1 win against Lens in Ligue 1 on Friday.

Coach Laurent Blanc is still without Marquinhos, Ezequiel Lavezzi and talisman Zlatan Ibrahimovic but skipper Thiago Silva returns to the squad for the first time since suffering a thigh injury more than two months ago.

These clubs are meeting for the second consecutive season in the Champions League, with Barcelona hoping for a repeat of their 4-0 win over Ajax at the Camp Nou in September last year. The Catalans have won seven out of eight games in La Liga this season and are yet to concede a goal domestically, but they lost 3-2 at PSG in their last Group F outing and may have one eye on Saturday’s trip to face eternal rivals Real Madrid.

Ajax drew 1-1 at APOEL three weeks ago and have not won any of their last eight away matches in the Champions League. The Amsterdam club, whose coach Frank de Boer was a team-mate of opposite number Luis Enrique at Barcelona over a decade ago, are unbeaten in eight games but drew 1-1 at Twente in the Eredivisie on Saturday. The visitors will perhaps be relieved that this will be the last game of former Ajax star Luis Suarez’s suspension for biting Giorgio Chiellini at the World Cup.

Fixtures in Groups F for Today:


APOEL, who ran Barcelona close in defeat and then drew with Ajax last time out, famously beat another French side, Lyon, on penalties in the last 16 in 2012. Giorgos Donis’s side are usually strong at home and are unbeaten in five since losing at the Camp Nou.

Manchester City continue their search for a first Champions League win this season when they face CSKA Moscow on Tuesday, while Chelsea, Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain are among the sides in action.

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