Thursday, January 21, 2021

Barca not at level to win Champions League – Dynamo´s Lucescu

SoccerNews in La Liga 4 Nov 2020

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Dynamo Kiev head coach Mircea Lucescu does not believe Barcelona are at the level to win the Champions League.

Group G leaders and LaLiga giants Barcelona will host Ukrainian visitors Dynamo at Camp Nou on Wednesday.

Barca equalled their worst tally of LaLiga points after six games since the Spanish competition reverted to three points for a win – Ronald Koeman’s side drew 1-1 with Deportivo Alaves on Saturday, meaning they have just eight points so far in the early stages of the 2020-21 campaign.

That is the same total as Barca managed at the start of the 2002-03 campaign when another Dutchman, Louis van Gaal, was in charge. 

Barca were also humiliated 8-2 by Bayern Munich in last season’s Champions League quarter-final and, speaking on the eve of the match, Lucescu told reporters: “After the game against Bayern Munich it was understandable that Barcelona were looking to make changes.

“They have a squad with very talented players, but they need time to learn the mechanisms.

“I don’t think Barcelona are at the level to win the Champions League at the moment. Bayern Munich, Manchester City or Paris Saint-Germain have more options.

“In any case, they have a footballer in Lionel Messi, who can be very important. A new coach needs a minimum of six months and in spring they will be another team. Barcelona are a team that are better off playing the Champions League than LaLiga, because in the domestic competition the rest of the rivals know them very well.”

Lucescu’s Dynamo have one point from two games to be third in Group G, five points adrift of unbeaten leaders Barca.

Barca are undefeated in their previous 22 games in the group stage of the Champions League, while they could win five group outings in a row for the first time since October 2017.

Lionel Messi has scored 20 goals in his last 24 appearances for Barca in the Champions League, while he last netted in his first three games of a single campaign in the competition back in 2018-19.

Dynamo are winless in their past 14 games against Spanish opponents in European competition, with their last victory coming back in March 1999 in the European Cup quarter-final second leg against Real Madrid.

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