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Sevilla's Luis Muriel fit to face Manchester United after injury scare

Stewart Robson joins Alison Bender to assess the chances of the five English teams in the UCL round of 16.

Sevilla striker Luis Muriel insists he will be fit for next week's Champions League round-of-16 first leg against Manchester United despite injuring himself against Girona last Sunday.

The Colombia international was replaced in the 64th minute of his team's 1-0 home win after sustaining a muscular problem in his left leg.

Tests revealed a left hamstring strain and forced Muriel to miss Monday's training session.

"Fortunately I stopped in time, as soon as I felt the pain, and that was enough to prevent anything serious from happening," he said.

"It's nothing and I just needed a few days to rest. I should be returning to training in midweek."

Luis Muriel has scored seven goals in all competitions for Sevilla.

Muriel has scored five goals in 19 league appearances for Sevilla following his move from Sampdoria last summer.

And the 26-year-old says the arrival of coach Vincenzo Montella, who replaced Eduardo Berizzo in December, has been a boost.

"Montella has given me the confidence to get the calmness back that I needed to perform as I have done in recent games," Muriel added.

"The confidence doesn't just come from playing every weekend but in many other aspects that happen on the day to day. To have confidence is everything, to be mentally well makes you play at a different rhythm. Now I face the hardest thing which is to continue on this path."

Sevilla, sixth in La Liga, play at Las Palmas on Saturday before hosting Manchester United in the first leg on Feb. 21.

Adriana Garcia is a Valencia-based football writer who covers La Liga for ESPN FC.

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