Man Utd: Fred relishing chance to face Barcelona in Europa League | Football


Fred has made 15 appearances for Man Utd so far this season (Photo: Getty)

Fred is relishing the opportunity to face Barcelona after they were drawn against Manchester United in the Europa League.

United finished second in their Europa League group, meaning they advanced to the play-off round where they would face one of the teams dropping down from the Champions League.

Barcelona were widely-considered to be the worst possible draw, after getting knocked out of the UCL by Bayern Munich and Inter Milan, and as fate would have it they were drawn against the Red Devils on Monday.

While United keeper David de Gea admitted that they were hoping to avoid the Spanish giants, midfielder Fred seemed delighted at the prospect.

‘We know that Barcelona is a great team,’ the 29-year-old told Manchester United’s official website.

‘It won’t be an easy game, there are no easy games in the Europa League. It will be a great game, I’m sure we are ready for it.

‘We players like playing in great fixtures like these ones, and we are prepared for this game. God willing, we’ll qualify for the next round.’

UEFA Europa League 2022/23 Knock-out Round Play-offs Draw

Barcelona will play Man Utd in February 2023 (Photo: Getty)

The match will be a repeat of the 2009 and 2011 Champions League finals, both of which United lost, with the first leg of the tie taking place at the Camp Nou on February 16 before the reverse fixture at Old Trafford a week later.

‘Our stadium has always had a great atmosphere with the fans constantly behind us,’ Fred added.

‘Obviously, we haven’t done as well in the last few seasons, but they have always been together with us, supporting the team.

‘This season is no different; every game, the big games, they were here, and we’ve had some great games and victories.

‘I’m sure they’ll be here against Barcelona supporting us, they’ll give us strength to get the win. That’s why it’s so important to play in front of our fans and get a result here.’

In other news, Fred was named in Brazil’s 26-man squad for the 2022 World Cup alongside United teammates Antony and Casemiro, as well as Alex Telles who is on loan at Sevilla.

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