Following two opening draws against Lorient and Toulouse at the commencement of the 2023/24 Ligue 1 season, PSG displayed their resilience by notching up seven goals in successive victories against Lens and Lyon.
Champions League is BACK! 📸
— Match Spoots (@matchspoots) September 17, 2023
This resurgence in form coincided with the return of Kylian Mbappe to the field. The French sensation has already netted five goals in just three league appearances and is poised to lead PSG’s frontline in another challenging campaign on the continental stage.
Les Parisiens kick off their UEFA Champions League journey with a home clash against German runners-up Borussia Dortmund, scheduled for Tuesday evening at the Parc des Princes.
In stark contrast, Borussia Dortmund’s fortunes have taken a downturn, with consecutive setbacks against Bochum and Heidenheim severely denting their aspirations for domestic glory.
Head coach Edin Terzic has legitimate concerns about his team’s defensive capabilities as they prepare to face PSG’s red-hot attacking force led by Mbappe. Dortmund conceding two goals to newly-promoted Heidenheim prior to the international break is a testament to their defensive vulnerability ahead of their trip to Paris.
While PSG’s star player, Kylian Mbappe, overcame a minor knee issue in time to feature against Nice, Coach Enrique is grappling with numerous absentees. Marco Asensio, sidelined due to a foot injury, is ruled out for the remainder of the month.
Nordi Mukiele and Nuno Mendes, recovering from hamstring injuries, are not yet match-ready. Presnel Kimpembe continues to struggle with an Achilles tendon problem, and Fabian Ruiz is doubtful after missing the game against Nice due to a thigh issue.
Lee Kang-in, who will soon represent South Korea at the Asian Games, remains sidelined with a muscular concern, while Sergio Rico is still on the path to recovery from a severe head injury, and fellow goalkeeper Alexandre Letellier is unavailable due to a knee problem.
Marquinhos and Manuel Ugarte, returning late from South America, were not considered for starting roles in the previous game but are likely to replace Danilo Pereira and Carlos Soler this time around.
Borussia Dortmund’s injury list is not as extensive, but Thomas Meunier (hamstring) and Mateu Morey (knee) are not expected back until the next month.
Julien Duranville is still working on regaining match fitness. On a positive note, goalkeeper Gregor Kobel and right-back Julian Ryerson both completed the full 90 minutes against Freiburg after dealing with their respective issues.
Niclas Fullkrug, despite a tendon problem, made a substitute appearance, while Giovanni Reyna is still nursing a leg injury. If Ryerson isn’t deemed fit for consecutive starts, Marius Wolf, who contributed to Reus’s late goal in the previous match, is a capable replacement. Ramy Bensebaini is expected to continue on the opposite flank, despite being substituted at halftime in the last game.