MATCHDAY: Man United hosts Wolves; PSG in French Cup action
A look at what’s happening in European soccer on Monday:
Manchester United hosts Wolverhampton and is still unbeaten in the four Premier League matches since Ralf Rangnick was hired as manager until the end of the season to transform the team’s fortunes. Performances have been far from convincing so far, despite three wins and a draw. United is four points behind fourth-place Arsenal but with two games in hand. Wolves are two places lower than United in ninth but with six fewer points. Wolves netted only 42 goals in 2021 — their lowest total since 1922 — with 34 coming in the league. Hwang Hee-chan is top scorer with four but has not struck since October and Wolves have just 13 goals in the Premier League this season. Only last-place Norwich has scored fewer times this season. Wolves is returning to action after two weeks that have seen two matches postponed due to coronavirus cases.
The day’s only game sees Paris Saint-Germain looking to reach the last 16 of the French Cup. PSG has won the competition a record 14 times. The defending champion is seeking to clinch it for a third straight year and should not face too much trouble winning at third-tier Vannes. PSG will be without seven-time Ballon d’Or winner Lionel Messi, who is recovering from the coronavirus back home in Argentina, and three other players due to COVID-19. Among them is Spain left back Juan Bernat, who is isolating in Paris.
Sevilla visits Cádiz aiming to take advantage of Real Madrid’s first loss in nearly three months. Julen Lopetegui’s side is in second place in the Spanish league at eight points off Madrid’s pace after the leaders fell 1-0 at Getafe on Sunday. A victory for Sevilla would put some drama back in the title race with the season at its midway point. Villarreal seeks its sixth consecutive win across all competitions when it hosts last-place Levante, which has yet to win a league match this campaign. Athletic Bilbao visits Osasuna in a northern derby.
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