UCL 2023-24: PSG vs Real Sociedad: Combined XI
Real Sociedad can be the biggest surprise of the Champions League this season
It was a learning experience for all teams in the Champions League group stage. PSG emerged from a group of deaths containing Dortmund, AC Milan, and Newcastle United. With the competition heating up, the best teams will fight it out to reach the quarter-finals. It was a resilient performance by Luis Enrique’s team which earned two wins and two draws throughout the group stage.
While Real Sociedad tops group D, consisting of Inter, Benfica, and Salzburg, few would have predicted how well they would perform throughout the group stage. With three victories and three draws, they have shown they can be the surprise package of this season. With no defeats throughout, the team proved to be the team to beat all the odds. Here is how it would look on paper if PSG and Real Sociedad had a combined XI.
PSG vs Real Sociedad: Combined XI (Formation: 4-3-3)
GK: Gianluigi Donnarumma
The Italian Goalkeeper has taken his game to the next level since moving from AC Milan as a free agent. In the six matches this season, he has managed to keep two clean sheets. He has displaced Keylor Navas as the No.1 keeper. With his ability to make critical saves in the game, PSG has been able to hold on to a strong position in the group.
RB: Achraf Hakimi
Achraf Hakimi, one of the most talented fullbacks in Europe, has been a major threat to the team from the right side. By creating the most opportunities for the team from the right (15), he has helped the side dominate the opposition. He has also played an important role in the defence.
The Brazilian international provides solid support for the backline with his experience and leadership qualities. In addition to being a strong tackler by nature, he can also make defence-splitting passes to assist the team in transitioning from defence to attack. PSG’s chances will be heavily dependent on his performance.
CB: Robin Le Normand
With his ability to make crucial interceptions and tough tackling nature, the Spanish international has steadily become a star in Real Sociedad’s colours. As a result of his efforts, the team has achieved the top spot in the group and prevented opponents from having a limited amount of chances to win.
LB: Lucas Hernandez
The France international has started in all the group matches for the team playing an important role in the team. His passing accuracy is among the best in the team (91%), demonstrating his ability to play under pressure. In the competition, his only goal was scored against Newcastle United, whom they lost 4-1.
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RM: Warren Zaïre-Emery
The latest prodigy from the youth setup, he has established himself as a regular for the side with Luis Enrique even applauding his performance. The teenager has played five matches in the competition against the top sides, and he seemed destined to play in these types of matches, as he scored four goals in the matches he played.
CM: Martín Zubimendi
As the successor to Sergio Busquets, Zumbimendi has been in good form at the club this season, demonstrating why top clubs worldwide want him in their squad. The team has benefited from his ability to dictate the game’s pace and play-forward passes under pressure.
LM: Brais Mendez
The Spanish international has been a major reason for Real Sociedad’s success this season. As a result of his three goals and one assist, the side finished first in the group. He has a knack for creating opportunities and scoring important goals for the team, making him a crucial player for the team if they wish to advance to the next round.
RW: Ousmane Dembele
Known for his tricks and ability to score from any angle, the former Barcelona player has developed great chemistry with Mbappe, who has the ability to change the outcome of any match at any time during the match. As of now, he has one goal and seven assists and will strive to play an important role in the remaining matches.
ST: Kylian Mbappe
As one of the best players in the world at the moment, Kylian Mbappe has contributed to PSG time and again with his goal-scoring prowess. He has scored 30 goals so far this season, including three in the Champions League. It will be him who will help the team to move forward in the competition to win after missing out last time when they lost to Bayern Munich.
LW: Mikel Oyarzabal
As of right now, the Spanish international has scored 12 goals but is just two goals away from matching his highest goalscoring total. Real Sociedad has become one of the best sides in Europe thanks to his versatility. He has created 7 chances so far in the tournament and also does his defensive duties efficiently for the team.
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