Bayern Munich head coach Heynckes has a full-strength team at his disposal for their Champions Leagues match against Besiktas, while Barcelona manager Valverde says he wanted to avoid meeting Chelsea in the last 16 round of the UEFA's top tournament.

Barcelona's players attend a training session at Stamford Bridge stadium in London on February 19, 2018, on the eve of their UEFA Champions League round of 16 football match against Chelsea.
Barcelona's players attend a training session at Stamford Bridge stadium in London on February 19, 2018, on the eve of their UEFA Champions League round of 16 football match against Chelsea. (AFP)

FC Barcelona and FC Bayern Munich face Chelsea FC and Besiktas JK respectively in the last 16 round of the UEFA Champions League on Tuesday.

Barcelona manager Ernesto Valverde earlier said he wanted to avoid meeting Chelsea in the first knockout stage of this season's Champions League and wished the London side had won their group.

"The Premier League teams are having a great Champions League and we can't forget we are playing against the current English league champions," Valverde told a news conference.

"English teams this year are in incredible form, much better than in previous years. Chelsea might be the same.

"We know that, because the English have such a strong league, they'll all be up there competing."

Barcelona’s Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez during training at Stamford Bridge, London, Britain - February 19, 2018.
Barcelona’s Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez during training at Stamford Bridge, London, Britain - February 19, 2018. (Reuters)

There are five English sides in the last 16 with Manchester City and Liverpool having taken big leads in their away legs while Tottenham Hotspur earned a 2-2 draw at Juventus.

"We wish Chelsea had finished first in their group so we didn't have to play them," added Valverde on the eve of Tuesday's mouthwatering first leg clash at Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea came second in Group C behind Roma on the head-to-head rule, while Barca finished ahead of Juventus in Group D.

Chelsea's Eden Hazard and Willian during training at Cobham Training Ground, London, Britain - February 19, 2018.
Chelsea's Eden Hazard and Willian during training at Cobham Training Ground, London, Britain - February 19, 2018. (Reuters)

Valverde has also taken his side seven points clear in La Liga and into the Spanish Cup final, while they are also among the favourites to win Europe's elite club competition.

"The Champions League has a special aura and that means everyone is looking forward to playing in games like this one which will be a tough tie against a difficult opponent," he said as he anticipated locking horns with Chelsea's Antonio Conte.

"He is one of the best coaches in the world with an extraordinary CV, not just with Chelsea but also with Juventus and the Italian national side," added Valverde.

"His teams are always hard working and they knew what they have to do. For me it's a great challenge to come up against one of his sides," added the Barca coach.

Like his opposite number, Valverde has been carefully studying Chelsea's tactical system and hopes to outwit Conte.

"Chelsea have a unique style of football and know their own game. The English style of football is very unique, very physical, but they play good football as well.

"They have a defined way of playing and we have to take that into account," he said.

"The mechanisms are different, the same way they will have to take into account our way of playing."

Strong Bayern give Heynckes selection headache

Bayern Munich head coach Jupp Heynckes admits he has some tough decisions to make with his side at near full-strength for their Champions League last 16, first-leg, clash against Besiktas on Tuesday.

For the first time in five years, Bayern have every outfield player fit and available for the match at the Allianz Arena.

Heynckes, who steered the five-time champions to the 2013 title, turns 73 in May, but says he still feels the "tension build" for a Champions League game.

He has tough calls to make with goalkeeper Manuel Neuer the only absentee as he recovers from a fractured foot.

"I have no A or B team - there is just one Bayern team," Heynckes said on Monday.

Bayern Munich's Thomas Muller, Franck Ribery and team mates during training at Saebener Strasse Training Ground, Munich, Germany - February 19, 2018.
Bayern Munich's Thomas Muller, Franck Ribery and team mates during training at Saebener Strasse Training Ground, Munich, Germany - February 19, 2018. (Reuters)

"Every player knows their position and understands each other, so I don't think we have too many problems with rotation.

"There are far more benefits, because everyone feels important and stays fresh.

"It's not easy, but I think the players are happy with how I have managed it so far."

Heynckes made eight changes for the starting side which won 2-1 at Wolfsburg on Saturday, and has to decide who sits out of the 18-man squad to face Besiktas.

Thiago Alcantara made his comeback at Wolfsburg after three months sidelined by injury, while French winger Kingsley Coman has recovered from a cold.

Thomas Mueller, Corentin Tolisso and James Rodriguez are all competing to play in behind striker Robert Lewandowski, while Coman, Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery are vying for berths on the wings.

Besiktas are in the Champions League knock-out stage for the first time.

Besiktas' Pepe during training at Allianz Arena, Munich, Germany on February 19, 2018.
Besiktas' Pepe during training at Allianz Arena, Munich, Germany on February 19, 2018. (Reuters)

The Turkish champions start a hectic period of six games in three weeks before the return leg against Bayern on March 14, including two home matches against Fenerbahce.

'Bayern could field two teams' 

Besiktas head coach Senol Gunes said his team plan to take the game to Bayern and are comfortable being underdogs.

"Bayern could field two teams, they have a big squad with many top players," said the 65-year-old.

"We expect Robben and Lewandowski to play, maybe Ribery too. But it doesn't matter who plays, we need to do our job and be careful.

"We want to press high and make life difficult for them.

"Wherever you play against Bayern, they will be the favourites and we'll enjoy the challenge."

Bayern are on a 13-match winning streak and Heynckes expects a hard fight in Munich.

"It's no surprise that Besiktas are here, they won all three of their away matches in the group stage," said Heynckes.

"They won't hide, they like to play attacking football –- if you let them. That's the key.

"They will look for their chances, so we need to be prepared.

"I hope my team puts in a top performance to lay the foundations for reaching the quarter-finals."

Heynckes is playing down Bayern's chances of winning the Champions League title for the first time in five years.

"All the top clubs want to win it," he said.

"There are five very strong teams in England, especially those that strengthened massively last summer and in winter.

"There are many favourites, not just the likes of Barcelona, Real Madrid and Paris."

Source: TRTWorld and agencies