HEEEEEEEEY Guys. Tom Robinson here with my thoughts on the Champions League draw for the Round Of 16 Draw. Which brought about some interesting ties…
Galatasary vs Schakle – Two dark horses pitted together and I love it. One of these Dark Horses may fancy their chances with this tie. Avoiding the big time players of the draw, whoever wins could put themselves in a position to win the entire thing. Good tie here.
Celtic vs Juventus – Scotland’s only hope of success in the Champions League has a difficult challenge in the form of the in-form and all dominating Italians, Juventus. However, as their victory over Barcelona can confirm, anything is possible. And considering the lack of serious competition in the Scottish League, why not go for it all, and try to conquer the Turin Giants. It’s always possible.
Bayern Munich vs Arsenal – Arsenal haven’t really got a lot to play for this season. Struggling for European places in the Premiership, and eliminated from the League Cup at the hands of Bradford of all teams, Arsenal is really counting on Europe in order to retrieve something this season, but the German Giants have really been eying the Champions League trophy for some time. Runners up in 2010 and 2012, Bayern are definitely proving themselves as one of the best teams in the world, but they need the Champions League trophy in order to do that. And Arsenal will have a lot of work to do in order to knock off the German Giants.
Valencia vs PSG – Again, two dark horses pitted together. Moneybags PSG and struggling Valencia are pitted against one another and you know what, PSG have a lot to prove, and if they can’t topple the struggling Valencia (currently mid-table), then they’ve got some serious issues. Must-win for PSG on this one.
Shaktar Donetsk vs Dortmund – Dortmund are a bit of the pace in the German title race, but in the Champions League they have absolutely dominated, not losing a single match in the “Group Of Death” which also included Manchester City, Real Madrid and Ajax, and holding victories over all three teams. And to be honest, it’s quite the opposite regarding Shaktar. While they have dominated the Ukrainian League, flying high with 17 wins out of 18, they only just got through to this stage of the tournament through through the completely bogus “Head-To-Head” record system, with a single away goal separating themselves and former European Champions Chelsea. They are lucky to even get to this far, and I would be pretty amazed if Shaktar were able to defeat the mighty Dortmund.
Team Messi (aka Barcelona) vs AC Milan – Yes, Team Messi have got themselves a tasty tie against the once-mighty AC Milan. 7th in Serie A and failing to defeat Malaga during the group stages, the chances of Milan knocking off Team Messi are very slim, especially when you consider that Lionel Messi by himself has scored more goals in a calendar year, than AC Milan’s entire team. But, anything’s possible I guess/
Malaga vs Porto – Another decent Dark Horse match. The Spanish vs Portuguese. Porto are still unbeaten in the Portuguese League and while they came 2nd to PSG in the group stages of the UCL, they looked damn good doing it. And the surprise package Malaga, did well to conquer their group which included AC Milan, Zenit St Petersburg and Anderlecht, and are even catching up to Real Madrid in La Liga. With both teams flying high both in Europe and their respective leagues, this one should be a cracker to watch. 🙂
MANCHESTER UNTIED vs REAL MADRID – HOLY S**T! Two iconic teams battling it out in the 1st Knockout Round Of The Champions League. And apparently, this is the first time Cristiano Ronaldo will face his old team since joining Real Madrid. A great added sub-plot. Honestly, finding out I will be watching Man Utd vs Real Madrid at least twice in 2013 is a great early Christmas present. Like them or hate them, these two will put on a jillyjacker of a show, and Real Madrid can forget about domestic issues in Spain, and in order to bring some light to their season, they have a chance to conquer a fellow powerhouse in Europe, in the form of Manchester United. I honestly don’t care who wins, because this match-up is sensational, and what a 1st Knockout Round we’ve got in store for us in 2013. 🙂
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