Barcelona boost as Napoli omit key midfielder Piotr Zielinski from Champions League squad list

La Liga giants Barcelona have this evening been afforded something of a boost in their hopes of advancing beyond Napoli in the Champions League’s round of 16.

This comes amid confirmation that the Serie A champions have officially left a long-time pivotal member of the club’s midfield ranks off their Champions League squad list for the 2nd half of the season.

The player in question? Piotr Zielinski.

Zielinski, for his part, played a central role in Napoli bringing an end to the club’s agonising wait for Scudetto glory last time out, racking up three goals and eight assists, alongside a further four goals and two assists on the continent.

And the Pole has continued to act as a key source of creativity to this point in the 2023/24 campaign, too, featuring from the off in 17 of the Partenopei’s 21 league outings.

And yet, as revealed a short time ago, he will play no part in the club’s upcoming Champions League double-header against Barcelona, or any tie beyond, should Napoli advance.

This comes with Zielinski having been omitted from Walter Mazzarri’s updated European squad list.

As much comes with the 29-year-old in what are labelled as ‘advanced talks’ to depart Naples in the summer, to link up with Serie A rivals Inter Milan on a free transfer.

Conor Laird | GSFN

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