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What to look out for in the Champions League round of 16 first legs week one Wednesday

Real Sociedad hope to keep Kylian Mbappé quiet and Lazio look for home inspiration against Bayern

Paris's Kylian Mbappé and Lazio's Luis Alberto
Paris's Kylian Mbappé and Lazio's Luis Alberto Getty Images

Real Sociedad will hope to keep their solid defensive record going and Lazio are looking to rock the Stadio Olimpico as the UEFA Champions League knockout stage continues.

Here are some key talking points ahead of Wednesday's games in the round of 16 first legs.

Round of 16 schedule

This week's fixtures and results

Tuesday 13 February

Copenhagen vs Man City

Leipzig vs Real Madrid

Wednesday 14 February

Paris vs Real Sociedad

Lazio vs Bayern

All kick-offs 21:00 CET

All of Copenhagen's Champions League group stage goals

La Real try to tame Mbappé

Real Sociedad were another surprise story of the group stage, with Imanol Alguacil's well-drilled side finishing ahead of last season's finalists Inter to top their section.

They have received a tough round of 16 assignment against 2019/20 runners-up Paris, who will always pose a threat with the star quality of Kylian Mbappé in their ranks. If there is one team who may fancy their chances of keeping the France forward quiet, however, it is Real Sociedad.

The Basque club conceded just two goals in the group stage; that's fewer than any other side, with their regular centre-back duo of Igor Zubeldia and Robin Le Normand shutting out some impressive attacking talent in Group D. They will have to be on their A game again to deal with Mbappé and Co in the Parc des Princes.

Kylian Mbappé's 2022/23 Champions League goals

Lazio's Stadio Olimpico factor

"It's an old, famous stadium that's seen so many battles in the past. It's a nice one to face." That was Bayern icon Thomas Müller's reaction to drawing Lazio in the round of 16, with the veteran forward clearly all too aware of the special atmosphere that will be guaranteed for the first leg.

The Biancocelesti certainly used the passionate home fans to their advantage in the group stage, winning two and drawing one of their encounters in Rome to finish as runners-up in their section. Bayern may have a psychological edge, though: they beat the Italian hopefuls 6-2 on aggregate at this stage in the 2020/21 campaign.

Can Lazio move a step closer to a first quarter-final in this tournament in 24 years, or will Bayern be able to start looking forward to making it 12 appearances in the final eight out of the last 13 seasons? It should make for fascinating viewing whatever the case.

Bayern vs Lazio: Musiala's first Champions League goal

Further ahead

  • Atlético de Madrid coach Diego Simeone will return to Inter and the Stadio San Siro on 20 February, having spent two years with the Nerazzurri as a player, winning the UEFA Cup in 1997/98.
  • Napoli vs Barcelona is one of the most eye-catching upcoming ties, with the first leg on 21 February set to unfold at Stadio Diego Armando Maradona, named after a man who featured for both clubs.
  • Arsenal are in the Champions League knockout stage for the first time since 2017, and face a tough trip on 21 February to Porto, who have lost just twice in 15 home games this season.

Where is the Champions League final being played?

UEFA via Getty Images

The 2023/24 Champions League final will take place at Wembley Stadium in London on 1 June 2024.