Barcelona players react to drawing PSG in the Champions League quarterfinals

FC Barcelona v SSC Napoli: Round of 16 Second Leg - UEFA Champions League 2023/24
FC Barcelona v SSC Napoli: Round of 16 Second Leg - UEFA Champions League 2023/24 / Jonathan Moscrop/GettyImages

After qualifying for the quarterfinals of the Champions League for the first time in the post-Messi era, Barcelona were drawn against a familiar foe in Paris Saint-Germain.

The matches between Barcelona and PSG have produced memorable moments, the remontada the obvious standout, but the Parisian side have had the better of it in their most previous encounter.

While some see PSG as the clear favorite in the tie, the Barcelona players don't see it that way and fancy their chances of going through.

"There are eight teams who are the favorites," said Barcelona forward, Raphinha. "We knew any draw was going to be difficult and PSG is no different. However, we know what we can give to win."

A special aspect of this match will be the return of not only former manager Luis Enrique, but of Ousmane Dembele as well. Dembele spent some tumultuous years at Barcelona with injuries derailing a significant portion of his stint. He decided to leaver for PSG this past season.

""It's not just Kylian Mbappé, but also other players like Ousmane Dembélé. I think this match can be very emotional for him," said striker Robert Lewandowski.

"I am confident that we will perform better than in the two games against Napoli and make it to the semifinals," he added.

Mbappé is the player Barcelona are going to need to stop if they want to have any chance of progressing to the semifinals. But he's not the only one.

"They're a nice opponent, very good, with a great manager in Luis Enrique," said Barcelona center-back, Ronald Araujo. "We have to prepare this game [well] and know their characteristics as they have quality players up top."

Araujo missed the last two meetings between these two sides in 2021 in the round of 16.

The Barcelona players sound confident but not arrogant. They are aware this won't be an easy task and they'll need to improve upon their performance against Napoli. That means taking advantage of their opportunities and limiting the mistakes at the back.

For the majority, it'll be the first time they face PSG.


Should he recover in time, only Frenkie de Jong and Marc-Andre ter Stegen will be the holdovers from their last encounter. The other one is Pedri but he is unlikely to recover from his own injury in time.