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Cancelo wary of Osimhen, others ahead UCL clash

Cancelo wary of Osimhen, others ahead UCL clash

Ahead of Barcelona’s UEFA Champions League round of 16 second-leg tie against Napoli, Portuguese defender Joao Cancelo has warned that although they are wary of the threat from Victor Osimhen, their focus won’t be on the Nigeria international alone.

The Spanish side a fortnight ago played out a 1-1 draw at the Diego Armando Maradona and will be banking on home advantage and history when they face Napoli in the second leg on Tuesday.

Also read: Moses Simon’s Nantes drop into relegation zone

Napoli have never defeated Barcelona in a competitive game in Europe but will be looking to change that narrative as they hope to reach the quarter-final of the Champions League for a second consecutive season. 

Osimhen heavily marked by Barcelona players in the first leg

Despite their defensive effort to keep the Nigerian at bay, the 25-year-old wiggled his way out and found the back of the net to keep his team’s hopes of reaching the quarterfinals alive. 

Speaking ahead of the return leg at the Estadi Olímpic Lluís Companys, Cancelo said although Osimhen and Khvicha Kvaratskhelia are the main threat, other players must also be monitored. 

“Osimhen had a half-chance in the first leg but still found the net. He’s one of the best strikers in the world,” Cancelo said.

“How about Matteo Politano? They are exceptional talents. There’s more. I like Zielinski, but he is not on the UEFA list, and Lobotka. I faced him with Portugal, and he’s a great player.”

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