Well we’ve just heard the news, and there are seme pretty meaty fixtures in the bowl, that’s for sure. A personal highlight for me will certainly be the AC Milan/Spurs fixture, but Inter/Bayern will be a spicy affair, it was the final last year after all!
Regardless, here are my predictions for the outcomes of the next round.
Roma vs Shakhtar
Roma haven’t had an outstanding season by any stretch of the imagination so far. But they have squad strength and the ability to win games. As good as Shakhtar are, I struggle to envisage Roma losing here. Shakhtar will make it hard for the Italians, but over two legs, Roma will pip them to it.
Agg score : 4-3
Tottenham vs AC Milan
This is too hard to predict, well it isn’t. My heart wants Spurs to win, but my head is telling me that is ludicrous. AC Milan have an outstanding team that are currently destroying anything that moves in Serie A. Spurs are a bit shaky at the back and as much as they may be able to score against the Italian outfit, they will almost certainly conceed. Expect to see a lot of goals, but Milan to comfortably sail through in the end. Sad that.
Agg Score: 4-6
Valencia vs Schalke
Schalke looked decent in the Champions League but their league form is enough for me to prefer Valencia in this one. Both will want to go and score goals, but things may get a bit cagey in the end. An away goals win if I’ve ever seen one.
Agg Score: 3-3 – Valencia to go through on away goals.
Inter vs Bayern Munich
Brilliant. Delighted to see this up here. That said, I have a sneaking suspicion that this may be the end of Benitez’s career at the San Siro. Should Inter lose over two legs to Bayern, it could be the writing on the wall for the former Liverpool man. However, regardless of any poor league form Inter have had, Bayern haven’t exactly been playing upto standard either. Louis Van Gaal is also under pressure and this could be a very tight affair. I think Bayern will take it myself, but I’m really not too sure.
Agg Score: 3-4
Lyon vs Real Madrid
Lyon have been decent so far this season. They are only two points off the pace in Ligue 1 and qualified comfortably in their CL group, however, they have nowhere near the firepower Madrid have. That said, injuries to key players have upset Madrid’s season and Mourinho will be hoping to have resolved the problem by the time they face Lyon. Despite their recent 5-0 defeat in the Classico, Madrid have looked good all season, they destroyed a group that featured Ajax and AC Milan and only conceeded two goals in doing so whilst sitting second in la liga, just 2 points off the pace. Madrid will be too good I feel, but it is one of those fixtures they usually stumble upon in the CL.
Agg Score: 2-6
Arsenal vs Barcelona
Last year’s tie was immense, I think we’d all love to see that again. It’s not really a tough one, you’d expect Barca to win, but the wonderful thing being is that Arsenal will attempt to try and play just like the Catalonians. Expect loads of goals, goalkeepers to be busy, a lot of clumsy fouls and Lionel Messi to make someone look stupid. Barca will win it comfortably in the end, but expect Arsenal to give them a game.
Agg Score: 4-7
Marseille vs Manchester United
Another straight forward one. United will win. Marseille look okay in Ligue 1, despite only being in 5th, the closeness of the league means that just one win could project them into 2nd. They also looked alright in Chelsea’s group, that said, the group was pretty weak with the exception of the English champions. The French outfit will certainly give United things to think about with players like Remy and Gignac on the field, but I just can’t see Sir Alex allowing himself to become undone in the same way Liverpool have fallen for similar teams in the past. United to win, comfortably in the end.
Agg Score: 2-4
FC Copenhagen vs Chelsea
Copenhagen have impressed me. Some decent performances against Barcelona have helped them qualify from a group in which only Barca were guaranteed by punters to get through. Chelsea’s jittery league form may be a cause for concern, but by the time this fixture rolls around, I fully expect Chelsea to firing all cylinders again. I can see Copenhagen getting a result at home, but at Stamford Bridge, they will be beaten.
Agg Score: 1-4
Follow Matt Visser on Twitter @Matt_V_Football.
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