Friday, March 21, 2014

The Champions League quarterfinals

I do not feel that the last-16 of this season's Champions League was overly exciting. Most games were largely decided in the first match, and only Manchester United fought back to a memorable, if not wholly deserved, comeback against Olympiakos.
Today was the draw for the quarterfinals, and these look more exciting:
  • FC Barcelona-Atletico Madrid: A Spanish quarterfinal between the giants of Barcelona and the newcomers Atletico Madrid, who will have another chance to annoy the Catalonians. FC Barcelona will be under pressure as favourites and being behind in the league, so expect a dramatic clash!
  • Real Madrid-Borussia Dortmund: This will be a repeat of last season's semifinal where the German underdogs managed to upset the Spanish favourites in two excellent and emotional matches. This season Borussia Dortmund is not looking as strong as last season, while Real Madrid have been looking to become better and better. If anything, Real Madrid are bigger favourites than last season, but they must never underestimate the German side.
  • Paris St. Germain-Chelsea: The current league leaders in England and France is bound to be good. The Parisians have become stronger and stronger under coach Laurent Blanc. They are leading the French league, which they are likely to win, and have looked strong in the CL. Chelsea is fighting to keep first spot in the Premier League, but under Jose Mourinho they are a dangerous team that can beat anyone.
  • Bayern Munich-Manchester United: A quarterfinal between two of the greatest clubs in the world is bound to be interesting. However, this time Bayern Munich would seem way too strong for Man U, which is struggling in the Premier League and struggled to be in the quarterfinals. Bayern Munich are surely big favourites, but Manchester will have everything to fight for, and the match will surely be worth watching.

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