Champions & Europa League QF draws


Champions & Europa League QF draws

The English torrent of five clubs in the Round of 16 of the UEFA Champions League has become a trickle with only one making it through to the last four.

Liverpool and Manchester City have been drawn against each other in the quarter finals, leaving the possibility of three Spanish teams in the semi finals.

Sevilla put a lame dog to the sword at Old Trafford but are less likely to overcome Bayern Munich, who routed Besiktas 8-1 on aggregate in the Round of 16. Bayern are often ignored compared to the Spanish giants for not being sexy enough but they are always a good bet for the last four at least. As with Barcelona and Manchester City, Bayern are running away with their domestic league.

As of now it looks like Pep Guardiola's side will be joining the usual suspects of Barcelona, Bayern  and Real Madrid in the next round, but only a fool would write off Jurgen Klopp's men before their two-legged clash with the Premier League leaders.

The Reds are the only side to have inflicted a league defeat on City this season and if they can register a home win in the first leg without conceding an away goal, then do not bet against them nicking one at the City of Manchester stadium.

With the knowledge of how to undermine the Blues banked at Anfield, the electrifying Mohamed Salah in imperious form and Liverpool's Champions Cup pedigree as a fillip, City's passage to the final four is no foregone conclusion.

The Reds may be far behind the Blues in the league in 2018 but equally they were not the best team in England when they won the Champions League in 2005 or reached the final in 2007.

Juventus will be keen to exact revenge on Real for last season's Champions League final hammering and against Tottenham they showed their will to fight back and inflict telling blows on an arguably superior foe.

However, reports of Real's death have been greatly exaggerated after their confident despatch of young pretenders Paris Saint Germain woke everyone up. Like Liverpool they are struggling domestically but are finding a new lease of life and brimming with confidence in Europe. They could even repeat last year's win.

Like Real, Barcelona are another ageing outfit who refuse to lie down and whose simple game plan is still frighteningly effective. Their efficient use of space and clinical finishing made light work of a talented Chelsea side and with Lionel Messi as effervescent as ever, it seems hard to see who can beat them.

Roma should succumb in the intimidating cavern of the Camp Nou as Chelsea did, leaving the Catalans in touching distance of the final, their first for three seasons. Now what price a clasico in Kiev on the 26th of May?

The Europa League meanwhile lost a few big names in Borussia Dortmund, Lyon and Milan in the last round and unless they are drawn against each other, the two big names left, Arsenal and Atletico Madrid, appear to be closing in on a final showdown on the 16th of May in Lyon.

While pleased to avoid Atletico, who thrashed Lokomotiv Moscow 8-1 on aggregate, Arsenal would have wished to avoid a Russian club at a time when the two countries are at loggerheads over the nerve agent attack in Salisbury.

The two favourites could draw each other in the semi finals of course and Marseille, 5-2 aggregate conquerors of Athletic Bilbao, might have something to say about that too.


Barcelona v Roma
Sevilla v Bayern Munich
Juventus v Real Madrid
Liverpool v Manchester City

Ties to be played on the 3rd/4th and 10th/11th of April

Recent Winners:
2013 Bayern Munich
2014 Real Madrid
2015 Barcelona
2016 Real Madrid
2017 Real Madrid


Leipzig v Marseille
Arsenal v CSKA Moscow
Atletico Madrid v Sporting Lisbon
Lazio v Salzburg

Ties to be played on the 5th and 12th of April.

Recent Winners:
2013 Chelsea
2014 Sevilla
2015 Sevilla
2016 Sevilla
2017 Manchester United

(c) Sean O'Conor & Soccerphile

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