The Champions League rund of 16 draw happened today in Nyon, Switzerland with some heavyweight matchups.
Amongst all 8 matchups, there are four you cannot miss:
Arsenal-Barcelona: Barcelona is currently in Tokyo to prepare for the 2015 Clubs World Cup and met for the last time in 2011 when Barcelona advanced on aggregate 4-3
Albert Soler, Barcelona director: “Arsenal and Barcelona have a similar style of play. The fans will enjoy themselves, we’re two sides with a similar understanding of the game. They will be two great matches. We must have maximum respect for Arsenal, they’re a great team and although we have a difficult task ahead it will be a guaranteed spectacle of football.
Chelsea-PSG: The two clubs will meet for the thrid straight consecutie times. Last year PSG eliminated Chelsea at the same stage of the competition and the year before went on eliminating the French in the Quaterfinals. Coaches react:
Laurent Blanc, PSG manager: “The Champions League is in two stages which are quite different. In the first one, the main focus is to qualify from the group – and it’s no easy feat, some big clubs don’t. In the second, knockout phase you need to be even better. I hope that Paris will be ready. We’re working each and every day with our players to be fit and ready. We lacked in those departments last season, so we want to avoid repeating those mistakes”.
Pep Guardiola, Munich manager: “It’s a very tough but also very attractive draw. These will be two huge games. Juventus are one of the best teams in Europe. They did not start brightly in their league but they have recovered. They have a great mentality. In February I can say how our form is, not now. Juve was the most difficult draw in that pot, besides Paris. If you want to say it’s 50-50, then say it’s 50-50; I don’t know”.
AS Roma-Real Madrid:
Emilio Butragueño, Real Madrid’s director of institutional relations: “It’s a special competition and we all know what it means and what a source of motivation it is. Roma are a tough side who compete well. Italian teams never give anything away. If we go into it thinking we’re favourites, things won’t turn out well. It’s a last-16 tie and, if you have a bad ten minutes, we know what the consequences can be. We’re confident of making it back here for the quarter-final draw, but at the same time we’ll be giving Roma the utmost respect that they deserve, of course”.
Rudi Garcia, Roma manager: “Real Madrid will be favourites. We faced Barcelona in the group stage and now Real Madrid, but we are in the Champions League for this reason. In February we will have a few players back from injury and we will be ready to give everything. All the lads are ready and looking forward to this tie”.
rest of the Draw:
Gent v Wolfsburg
PSV Eindhoven v Atletico Madrid
Benfica v Zenit St Petersburg
Dynamo Kiev v Manchester City