Saturday, April 16, 2016

European semi-finals

The quarterfinals of the Champions League and Europa League were great, and we now have the semi-finals draws.
In the Champions league:
  • Real Madrid-Manchester City: Real Madrid's giants made it through thanks to an incredible Cristiano Ronaldo, but do not look unbeatable, so Manchester City's semi-final debutants surely have a chance. To beat Paris St. Germain they were organized and intelligent, and not least had a fantastic Kevin DeBruyne. The League title seems lost for both sides, who are bound to put everything into the Champions League.
  • Atletico Madrid-Bayern Munich: Atletico Madrid eliminated the defending champions, mighty FC Barcelona, playing their typical committed, physical and tactically intelligent football. They should have good chances against a Bayern Munich side that plays similar type of football as Barcelona, but who are at the same time much more cool-headed and a has more complete tactical variations than the Catalans.  
In the Europa League:
  • Liverpool-Villarreal: Liverpool are in the semifinals after a thrilling quarterfinal contest with Borussia Dortmund. Villarreal are there after defeating a strong Sparta Prague side in two matches. In terms of next season's CL, Liverpool are unlikely to be there, while Villarreal are almost ensured at least qualifiers being 4th in the Spanish League. Be sure though that both teams will fight for this title, and I think this could be one of the most entertaining matches among the semi-finals.
  • Shakhtar Donetsk-Sevilla: Sevilla are the defending champions and most winning side in the Europa League, has won the last two, but had to struggle to get there on penalties against Athletic Bilbao. They should nevertheless probably be favourites in this match. That said, Shakhtar Donetsk won the competition in 2009 and swept aside Braga to make it to the semifinals. Both teams qualified to the Europa League through the Champions League, and will be looking for Champions League next year: Sevilla are very unlikely to make it next season, while Shakhtar Donetsk are in comfortable second spot in the Ukranian league, almost sure to get CL qualifiers next season.

1 comment:

Luka Modric said...

Just two matches remaining until the great final of UEFA Champions League, which will be played on San Siro (commonly known The Stadio Giuseppe Meazza), Milan. In the first match, Manchester City will meet on Real Madrid, in an interesting and spectacular match.