Madrid, Spain | Xinhua | After their disappointments in the Champions League before Christmas, FC Barcelona and Sevilla are both in Europa League action on Thursday night, with Barca at home to an in-form Manchester United, while Sevilla entertain PSV Eindhoven in the Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium.
Barcelona entertain Manchester United top of La Liga and in an excellent run of form that has seen them win their last 11 games in all competitions, while their rivals have also come into form as coach Erik ten Hag imposes his style on the side.
United are currently third in the Premier League, just two points behind neighbors, Manchester City and seven points over fifth place Tottenham Hotspurs.
Ten Hag has a long injury list for the trip to the Camp Nou Stadium, with several key players out of action. Christian Eriksen is out until April with an ankle problem, while Brazilian winger Anthony and midfielder Scott McTominay have muscle problems and Anthony Martial has an issue with his hip.
Meanwhile, Lisandro Martinez and Marcel Sabitzer, who arrived in January to cover for Eriksen, are both suspended.
The club will welcome back Casemiro in midfield and the Brazilian will once again face rivals, he caused so many problems for while at Real Madrid.
Barcelona will be without Ousmane Dembele and Sergio Busquets through injury and it will be interesting if Ansu Fati is in the starting 11 after doubts about his future increased after he was an unused substitute in Villarreal on the weekend.
Sevilla have improved their form since the start of the season, pulling clear of the relegation zone to 12th in La Liga thanks to three wins from their last four league matches.
The return of Bryan Gil on loan from Tottenham, plus the return to form of midfielder Fernando and the fact that Youssef En-Nesyri has come back revitalized from the World Cup, has given Sevilla a more positive outlook, although they are still just four points clear of the relegation zone and coach Jorge Sampaoli could rotate his side ahead of a vital weekend trip to face Rayo Vallecano.