This article is part of Football FanCast’s The Chalkboard series, which provides a tactical insight into teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
This Tuesday night Barcelona travel to Signal Iduna Park for their Champions League opener against Borussia Dortmund.
And by the looks of it, the clash is shaping up to be a pulsating one that very well may be decided by either of the team’s respective forwards: Antoine Griezmann for the Blaugrana and Jadon Sancho for the German hosts.
When Barcelona meet Dortmund this Tuesday, it’s likely to rain goals. If we can learn anything from both team’s opening four fixtures in their respective leagues, then it’s the fact that they are capable of hitting the back of the net on a consistent basis.
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Barcelona have scored a total of 12 goals thus far and Borussia Dortmund have one more in the bank, having scored 13 in four matches. Suffice to say, so far, they both have their shooting boots on. For that reason, it’s very likely that the club’s respective forwards will decide the game.
Both Griezmann and Sancho have been pretty clinical in front of goal as of late, and they will have to be again later this week if they want to get off on the right foot in Europe’s premier club competition.
On paper, both of these stars have been shining for their teams in La Liga and the Bundesliga respectively.
Griezmann has scored two goals and assisted a further two in four games so far, and Sancho has an even better record. The 19-year-old has bagged two, just like the Frenchman, but has also added four assists.
Sancho also has two key passes on average per game, while Griezmann has 1.3. The Frenchman, however, edges the young Englishman out in shots per game with 3.3 vs 1.5. Sancho, though, has 3.5 dribbles per game as opposed to Griezmann’s 1.3.
Either way, this battle could be key to deciding which team will come out on top in Germany.
Ernesto Valverde will, therefore, be hoping that Griezmann arrives at his brilliant best and shows just what he can on the biggest stage of them all; Lucien Favre will be expecting the same of his England international.