5 key players who will miss the Round of 16 | UEFA Champions League 2019-20
- We take a look at five key players who have been ruled out of the Champions League Round-of-16 stage.
The knockout stage of the UEFA Champions League is almost upon us, with Europe's elite clubs set to resume hostilities to be crowned champions of the continent come May.
What started with 32 clubs back in September has been whittled down to the last 16 and over the next one month, a place in the quarter-finals would be up for grabs as sides take on one another in two-legged ties.
In light of this, every coach would have loved going into the fixtures with a fully fit squad of players but injuries are very much a part of the game and no player, no matter how great or talented, is immune from their treacherous snare.
Injuries come in different forms, with some effectively ending great careers, while others are nothing more than minor scares that are bounced back from with time.
With just days to the commencement of the Champions League knockout rounds, some clubs have been hit with devastating injury news and would not have the services of key players heading into the fixtures.
Here, we shall have a rundown of five important players who have been ruled out of the Champions League knockout rounds due to injury.
#5 Memphis Depay (Lyon) - Knee Injury
The 26-year-old has enjoyed a new lease of life since transferring to Lyon after his ill-fated Old Trafford spell and has been one of the standout performers in Ligue 1 over the last two years.
His return of 39 goals and 27 assists from his last 85 league matches is indicative of his growing influence at the Stade Gerland. He has also been influential in Europe as he scored five goals in five matches in the group stage of the Champions League to help Les Gones progress to the knockout rounds behind RB Leipzig.
Rudi Garcia would, however, have to do without the services of Depay, as the winger has been ruled out with a knee injury that he sustained against Rennes in a league clash in December last year.
The injury is expected to keep him out for the rest of the season and even though he is stepping up his rehabilitation plan to make an earlier return, it is guaranteed that he would not be fit in time for their clash with Juventus.