Guardiola: Haaland cannot win Champions League for Man City on his own
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The Champions League round of 16 draw takes place in Nyon, Switzerland this morning (11am) with all four Premier League clubs in the pot. Manchester City, Chelsea, Tottenham and Liverpool are among the heavyweights to compete in the first knockout round. Express Sport has simulated the Champions League draw with some mouthwatering ties thrown up.
Liverpool vs Bayern Munich
After finishing second to Napoli despite also amassing 15 points, Liverpool will face one of Porto, Benfica, Bayern Munich or reigning European champions Real Madrid in the next stage. Our draw has thrown them together with Sadio Mane’s Bayern.
The two teams last met in 2019, when they drew 0-0 at Anfield in the first leg – which was played in England because Liverpool also finished second in their group that season. The Reds were then 3-1 victors in Germany on their way to winning a sixth European Cup in the Spanish capital of Madrid.
This clash would see Jurgen Klopp’s side reunite with former winger Mane. Bayern topped Group C with six wins from six and scored 18 goals while conceding just two despite facing both Inter Milan and Barcelona. They have also scored 41 times in just 13 Bundesliga games, making them a formidable opponent.
AC Milan vs Manchester City
City have not met AC Milan since 1978 but have been handed a glamorous – and winnable – trip to the San Siro to face the Italian champions here. Milan finished second to Chelsea in Group E.
The Serie A giants, second in the league at present, were beaten 3-0 away by Chelsea and then 2-0 at home, albeit in a game they played with 10 men for 70 minutes. And City would be confident of putting Milan to the sword across 180 minutes.
Inter Milan vs Chelsea
Having beaten AC Milan twice in the groups, Group E victors Chelsea have been handed a return to the Italian city here to take on their rivals. Inter ended eight points adrift of Bayern who defeated them home and away.
Simone Inzaghi’s side finished just two points off champions AC last season but are 11 points behind leaders Napoli this term. They’ve lost four of 12 league games and while Chelsea are still finding their identity under Graham Potter, the Blues would be favourites across the two legs.
PSG vs Tottenham
This would be a cruel one. Tottenham were overjoyed at Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg’s 95th-minute winner at Marseille, because it meant they topped Group D just an hour after they had been on course to drop into the Europa League.
But their prize in our draw is Group H runners-up PSG, who only finished second because Benfica won 6-1 in their final match and topped the group courtesy of scoring more goals away from home. The Parisians would be a scary prospect for Spurs with Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappe in brilliant form, not forgetting Neymar.
Antonio Conte’s side would at least travel to Paris first before welcoming the Ligue 1 champions to north London for the return tie. But this would be as tough as it could possibly get for Spurs.
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