Some huge European clubs will potentially find themselves out of contention for the UEFA Champions League title this week, as Matchday 5 of the competition contains some crucial group-stage fixtures.
Napoli are one of those sides, who despite leading the way in Serie A this term, have struggled to get it going in European competition. They take on Shakhtar Donetsk knowing only a win will do if they're to keep their slim hopes of qualification alive.
Elsewhere, both Borussia Dortmund and Atletico Madrid may also find themselves unable to progress. Even if they beat Tottenham Hotspur and Roma, respectively, results elsewhere have the potential to seal their fate.
It's also a big week for Juventus, who need a result at home to Barcelona to relieve pressure from their qualifying effort.
Here's the schedule for this week's fixtures and a closer look at what should be a couple of standout clashes.
Matchday 5 Schedule
Tuesday, November 21
Group E: Sevilla vs. Liverpool, Spartak Moscow vs. Maribor
Group F: Manchester City vs. Feyenoord, Napoli vs. Shakhtar Donetsk
Group G: Besiktas vs. Porto, Monaco vs. RB Leipzig
Group H: APOEL vs. Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund vs. Tottenham Hotspur
Wednesday, November 22
Group A: Basel vs. Manchester United, CSKA Moscow vs. Benfica
Group B: Anderlecht vs. Bayern Munich, Paris Saint-Germain vs. Celtic
Group C: Qarabag vs. Chelsea, Atletico Madrid vs. Roma
Group D: Juventus vs. Barcelona, Sporting CP vs. Olympiakos
TV Info: BT Sport (UK), FOX Sports (US)
Juventus vs. Barcelona
Having come so close only to fall at the final hurdle last season in the Champions League, Juventus would have been hoping to go one better this term in the competition. But their qualification chances are under some pressure.
With two games to go they lead Sporting CP, who are in third, by just three points. It means defeat for Juve and a win for the Portuguese side against Olympiakos would make the final fixtures interesting.
The situation could have been worse for the Italians. Last time out against Sporting, Gonzalo Higuain struck late on to secure a crucial point for Juve; per the competition's official Twitter account, he loves the Champions League:
Champions League @ChampionsLeague
Higuaín has been directly involved in 6 goals in his last 5 games... ⚽️ 5 🅰️ 1 Best striker in Serie A is _________________________ #UCL https://t.co/exvWKzhfCD2017-11-6 13:42:01
The Bianconeri will need him at his deadly best against Barcelona here. The Blaugrana may have already qualified for the knockout stages, but they can ensure top spot if they avoid defeat.
So far this term under Ernesto Valverde they've proved to be a tough nut to crack, adding a robustness at the back to complement the attacking flair they're renowned for.
Rafael Hernandez hailed the defensive contribution of Samuel Umtiti and Marc-Andre ter Stegen recently, as well as the continued brilliance of Lionel Messi:
Rafael Hernández @RafaelH117
Barcelona similar to last season. Umtiti and Ter Stegen world class, Messi being Messi, + Paulinho. Rest underperforming bar Busquets.2017-10-28 19:11:14
It'll be fascinating to see the approach from both sides in this one, as a point would suit both overall. It means it might be a cagey contest to begin with.
Juventus are strong at home and have enough to breach this watertight Barcelona back line. But Valverde's side have consistently found a way to get through matches this term.
Prediction: Juventus 1-1 Barcelona
Napoli vs. Shakhtar Donetsk
They've been lauded for their sensational start to the Serie A season, but Napoli will miss out on the knockout stages of the Champions League if they fail to beat Shakhtar Donetsk on Wednesday.
For manager Maurizio Sarri it's clear a challenge for the Scudetto has taken priority this term, with players rotated for some key matches in Europe. But two wins from their last two matches could still be enough to see them through.
As noted below, the competition has not been kind to them so far this term, with Manchester City securing back-to-back victories over the Serie A outfit:
Champions League @ChampionsLeague
Napoli suffer their 3rd defeat in all competitions this season - all in the #UCL group stage. https://t.co/ukXIawMrXg2017-11-1 21:59:43
Still, matches at home to Shakhtar and away to Feyenoord represent winnable games.
Napoli have shown throughout 2017 they have the attacking talent to match any side, with Dries Mertens, Jose Callejon and Lorenzo Insigne all so effective at their best. Provided they feature and perform, they should have too much for the Ukrainian visitors.
Shakhtar beat Napoli earlier in the competition and shone home and away against Feyenoord, meaning a draw would be enough to see them through to the knockout stages. Matt Law of the Daily Telegraph praised them earlier in the tournament:
Matt Law @Matt_Law_DT
Shakhtar and Paulo Fonseca on course to qualify from Man City and Napoli's group after beating Feyenoord last night. That would be a brilliant achievement2017-11-2 08:43:40
The San Paolo is a difficult place to go, though, and while Napoli may have other priorities in 2017-18, they'll do enough to keep their slender hopes of qualifying alive.
Prediction: Napoli 2-0 Shakhtar Donetsk