Champions League delivers more big clashes in Last 16

The four remaining English teams in this season’s Champions League were dealt a tricky round of 16 draw today with both Liverpool and Manchester City given Madrid assignments.

Liverpool have been drawn to play Atletico Madrid, while Manchester City, also seeded after reaching the knockout phase as Group C winners, were pitted against Spanish giants Real Madrid.

Chelsea have been drawn to play Bayern Munich and last season’s beaten finalists Tottenham will play current Bundesliga leaders RB Leipzig.

Holders Liverpool will play the first leg away in Madrid before welcoming Atletico to Anfield for the return leg.

City’s reward for qualifying for the knockout stages is a date with Zinedine Zidane’s Real Madrid, with the Premier League side enjoying home advantage for the second leg.

Five-time winners Barcelona take on Napoli, Borussia Dortmund will play Paris St Germain and Italian champions Juventus face Lyon.

Italian club Atalanta, who qualified for the competition for the first time, will take on Valencia.


1st legs
18 February: Borussia Dortmund v Paris Saint-Germain, Atlético Madrid v Liverpool
19 February: Atalanta v Valencia, Tottenham v RB Leipzig
25 February: Chelsea v Bayern Munich, Napoli v Barcelona
26 February: Real Madrid v Manchester City, Lyon v Juventus

2nd legs
10 March: Valencia v Atlanta, RB Leipzig v Tottenham
11 March: Paris Saint-Germain v Borussia Dortmund, Liverpool v Atlético Madrid
17 March: Manchester City v Real Madrid, Juventus v Lyon
18 March: Bayern Munich v Chelsea, Barcelona v Napoli

City’s director of football Txiki Begiristain put on a brave face after learning his club’s last-16 opponents.

“It’s always a pleasure to play against Real Madrid, and also to play in a big stadium like the Santiago Bernabeu,” he said.

“We’re happy to go there, of course, and we know what we are going to face, we know them very well.

“Also, of course, they know us and what we’re doing and our manager and our team. Everybody knows each other, but it’s a real pleasure to go there.”

Former Tottenham defender Ledley King feels boss Jose Mourinho’s Champions League pedigree will be a big factor against Leipzig.

“The manager has won the Champions League and his experience will rub off on the players,” he told BT Sport.

“They (Leipzig) are a good side, play with a lot of pace and intensity,”

“It will be a good game. Going to Germany is tough. It is one we won’t be taking lightly. It will be a tough task, but I am quietly confident we can get through.”

Manchester United, Arsenal, Wolves, Celtic and Rangers all learned their Europa League last-32 opponents today as well.

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