Manchester United star Edinson Cavani sends message over Champions League draw

Edinson Cavani has issued a fearless statement over Manchester United’s potential last 16 opponents in the Champions League ahead of Monday’s draw, insisting that they fear no one.

Cristiano Ronaldo spearheaded the Reds surge to qualification for the knockout stage after scoring the winning goal during the Old Trafford meetings with Villarreal and Atalanta before scoring the opener and a last-minute equaliser in the respective corresponding fixtures.

The win over the Yellow Submarine on the penultimate matchday ensured that their name was in the hat and as a result Ralf Rangnick afforded multiple changes from the side that beat Crystal Palace days earlier, handing debuts to Tom Heaton, Zidane Iqbal and Charlie Savage.

Rangnick will have to prepare his side to face any of Paris Saint-Germain, Sporting, Benfica, RB Salzburg, Atletico Madrid or Inter Milan in the first knockout round.

The last time that the Reds reached this stage was the 2018-19 season where they famously overcame PSG at the Parc des Princes but they will be hoping to avoid the likes of Kylian Mbappe, Lionel Messi and Neymar.

However, striker Edinson Cavani is ready for whatever the draw throws up insisting there is no fear factor ahead of the prospect.

“Yes, it’s been a job very well done,” he told the United website.

“In spite of this Champions League being a tough competition, and then, at times, things became a little more difficult and there were moments when there was an entirely different complexion on things.

“But then as a result of a lot of hard work and a real obsession to achieve our prime target, which was to qualify into the last 16.

“But right now, we find ourselves in a wholly different position, a position where I think our first objective of getting out of the group stage has been achieved, but we’re now achieving another very important goal, and that is to top the group, which is also a really stand-out achievement of our qualification.”

Barcelona ultimately knocked United out in the quarter-finals after beating PSG in 2019 but a year later they slipped into the Europa League as they failed to move beyond the Parisiens, RB Leipzig and Istanbul Basaksehir

He added: “Look, I have my own personal opinion on this, and everyone will have their own thoughts and views on this competition. I personally know and believe that, to win an overall competition, you have to come up against the very best.

“Sometimes you’re drawn against some teams, other times you’re drawn against other different sides. But I think that the best teams in Europe are involved in this competition. So I’m not really one for thinking, let’s see who we get in the draw!

“Whichever team that we get to play, the key will be that we trust and believe in ourselves, and in just how strong this team can be, and that we are calm in the knowledge that we can go out onto the pitch, against whoever we draw, with our own identity and personality.

“Our identity in the way we play, our own identity… So personally I’m not really one who really pays close attention to the draw.”

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