As Europe’s premier club competition enters it’s business end, the road to Cardiff is now tougher than ever. Here is a quick glance at the eight teams that have made it thus far in the competition and their chances of making it to the final on 3rd of June.
In the season so far, considering their form in the premier league, not many pundits gave them a chance to knock out Sevilla in their Round of 16 fixture. It might be a little harsh on Ranieri but since his departure the team is beginning to regain the form that won them the league last season. The other teams might fancy their chances against the flying foxes but this is a team capable of defending deep and grinding out results which makes them the team to avoid for the big boys.
2.Atletico de Madrid(ESP)
Diego Simeone’s side have lacked their usual consistency in La Liga this season but their almost invincible defense and determination makes them a formidable force in Europe plus the presence of Antoine Griezzman up front makes them extremely threatening on breaks which has helped them knock out Bayern and Barca in the previous seasons. In what could be the farewell season for Simeone can his team go one better this time ?
The only French side alive after PSG’s nightmare at Camp Nou, the side from the principality knocked off City on away goals and this is were their strength lies- attack. With Radamel Falcao slowly coming to his best along a talented lot of youngsters this is the surprise package for the season.
4.Real Madrid CF(ESP)
The champions have not been at their best in the past month dropping points both home and away in the La Liga with their defense particularly looking fragile at times, Los Blancos need to push up a gear if they are to become the first team to retain the trophy in the champions league ere. But with the attacking strength at their disposal, Real would fancy themselves against any team in the competition.
5. FC Barcelona(ESP)
After a “comeback for the ages” on Women’s day, the feeling at Camp Nou is that this is once again Barca’s year. But the Blaugrana are completely aware that they are no way near to the form that won them the treble two seasons ago and their inconsistency was evident once again as they lost three precious points in the Liga race at Deportivo. Although MSN have single handedly carried them in the past as they are in the present, their midfield is weaker than ever. With Anders Iniesta declining and Andre Gomez turning into a disastrous signing, Rafinha and Roberto need to replicate their performances from the historic night in all of the remaining games.
The Bavarians are the team to beat this season as they ran riot against Arsenal probably putting the final nail in Wenger’s coffin. Having regained the control of the Bundesliga, the German giants are arguably playing the best football since Jupp Heyneckes’ departure. Although they would want to break the Spanish jinx having been eliminated by a Spanish side in the past three seasons under Guardiola.
7. Borussia Dortmund (GER)
The yellow wall appeared to have cracked in the first leg against Benfica but they came back in style to once again be the surprise package in the competition. In what could be the final season for Pierre Emerick Aubamiyang and Mario Gotze this Dortmund side is more than capable of rewriting the history books and their formidable pace would give them a huge chance agains possession based football of Barca and Bayern.
8.Juventus FC (ITA)
The old lady is again the sole representative of Seria -A alive in the competition. Juve as always are a force to reckon with . Considering their formidable defensive record and the attacking strength of Higuain and Dybala this may be their year. Having made it to the final two seasons ago, Allegri’s side are more than capable of grinding out results and have all it takes to go all the way to Cardiff and lift the trophy.
With the draw for the Quarter-Final fixtures taking place today, and the final stages starting mid-April, we are not far from getting our European Champion this season.
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