PARIS, France (AFP) — Holders Bayern Munich will face final yr’s crushed finalists Paris Saint-Germain within the quarter-finals of this season’s Champions League, whereas yesterday’s draw for the final eight additionally threw up a conflict between Liverpool and Actual Madrid.
The draw additionally pitted Premier League leaders Manchester Metropolis towards Borussia Dortmund, with Chelsea taking part in Porto within the different tie.
Hansi Flick’s Bayern facet defeated PSG 1-0 behind closed doorways in Lisbon final August to win their sixth European Cup and stay the crew to beat, having gained 18 and drawn one in all their 19 video games within the Champions League for the reason that starting of final season.
The primary leg is ready to be performed in Germany on April 7, with the return in Paris on April 13.
“The draw is after all a troublesome one, and surprises exist, however we will play towards the crew that’s the greatest on the continent in the intervening time,” mentioned PSG Coach Mauricio Pochettino, who was appointed in January and oversaw a 5-2 mixture win over Barcelona within the final 16.
“We’re optimistic,” the Argentine informed PSG’s official web site.
The assembly of Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool and Zinedine Zidane’s Actual is one other re-run of a current ultimate, with the Spaniards beating the Reds 3-1 in Kiev in 2018 to win the final of their file 13 titles up to now.
Liverpool then gained the trophy for the sixth time in Madrid in 2019 however their Premier League title defence this season has unravelled, with the Anfield membership sixth within the desk having misplaced 9 occasions in 17 video games in 2021.
Klopp’s facet are as a consequence of be away within the first leg on April 6, nevertheless it stays to be seen the place that match will likely be performed.
Atletico Madrid’s residence leg towards Chelsea within the final 16 was moved to Bucharest as a consequence of restrictions imposed on journey to Spain by British authorities within the pandemic.
The winner between Liverpool and Actual will go onto a semi-final towards both Chelsea or Porto, throwing up the potential for an all-English last-four tie. Liverpool beat Chelsea within the semi-finals in 2005 and in 2007.
Actual have typically struggled this season too however they might be optimistic about their prospects within the wake of the draw.
“I feel they’d have signed for that, the truth is with two palms,” ex-Madrid participant, coach and sporting director Jorge Valdano informed Spanish TV channel Movistar Plus. “Liverpool will not be what they have been final yr.”
Actual coach Zinedine Zidane mentioned of Liverpool: “We all know them, bodily they demand quite a bit from you.”
Unbeaten in 13 video games for the reason that appointment of Thomas Tuchel as coach, Chelsea will likely be anticipated to get the higher of Portuguese champions Porto, who ousted Juventus and Cristiano Ronaldo within the final 16.
Nevertheless, that tie may be relocated given journey restrictions between the UK and Portugal which prompted each legs of the current Europa League conflict between Arsenal and Benfica to be performed at impartial venues.
“I am comfortable we play a world recreation, not towards an English crew, as a result of the Champions League is about that and I at all times desire to play groups from different international locations,” mentioned Tuchel.
“Clearly many individuals will perhaps now make us favourites however you may ask in Turin their opinion about whether or not it lets you be favourites,” referring to the Juventus defeat.
In the meantime Metropolis will likely be robust favourites towards Dortmund, with the winner of that tie going by way of to a semi-final towards Bayern or PSG.
The prolific Erling Braut Haaland will likely be Dortmund’s principal risk, with Metropolis boss Pep Guardiola saying: “The numbers converse for themselves, he is the most effective strikers on this planet proper now, at his age.”
Journey restrictions between the UK and Germany may additionally have an effect on that tie.
Each legs of Metropolis’s last-16 tie towards Borussia Moenchengladbach have been performed in Budapest, as was Liverpool’s tie towards RB Leipzig.
This season’s semi-finals are as a consequence of be performed in late April and early Could, with the ultimate on Could 29 in Istanbul.
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