Matthijs de Ligt ready to face Barcelona’s Frenkie de Jong, Robert Lewandowski

FC Bayern München v FC Barcelona: Group C - UEFA Champions League

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Ahead of Bayern Munich’s Champions League bout against FC Barcelona, defender Matthijs de Ligt offered some thoughts on two of the players he’ll likely face in his pre-game press conference (via @iMiaSanMia).

First, there’s ex-Bayern and Poland striker Robert Lewandowski. It will be De Ligt’s job in part to contain the lethal hitman, and he knows that won’t be an easy task.

“You always have respect for a player like Robert Lewandowski,” De Ligt said. “He had a good time at Bayern and is currently doing very well in Barcelona. Against a player like him, you always have to be ready and do everything well.”

Then there’s his Netherlands teammate Frenkie de Jong. De Jong was linked at times to a Bayern transfer this summer, or at least to a salary-saving Barca exit — though neither materialized. For a while, it looked like De Jong was out of coach Xavi Hernández’s plans, perhaps to help pave a way for his eventual exit.

But the Dutchman has forced his way back into consideration, and may be the presence in defensive midfield they’re looking for to stabilize performances against top opposition.

“I talk a lot to Frenkie,” De Ligt said. “He hasn’t played very much earlier this season, but in the last few games he has played again. I’m happy for him. He’s a great player and is very important for Barcelona and also for our national team.”

Interested in a preview of the game? Then why not check out the latest episode of our podcast? We talk about the emergence of Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting as a legitimate striker option, as well as what Barcelona have in store for us. Listen to it below or on Spotify.

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Matthijs de Ligt ready to face Barcelona’s Frenkie de Jong, Robert Lewandowski

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