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Sports

Eight Teams, Two Legs, Zero Margin for Error

As the epic quest for the European football crown enters the final stretch, Zidane’s Los Blancos are down but are they out?

With Bayern Munich, Paris Saint-Germain, Liverpool, Chelsea and Real Madrid competing against each other to win the prestigious trophy, this draw will probably be a very crucial moment in this intense season of European football.

After the defeat that the Paris Saint-Germain faced at the hands of Bayern Munich in last year’s champions league final, they will definitely be ready to take their revenge this time, especially since Bayern Munich have not shown their best this season. Kylian Mbappe stunned Barcelona in the round of 16 and will be intent on making his mark on this game.

Manchester City have drawn Borussia Dortmund in the quarter final draw. According to reports, Pep Guardiola and Manchester city are very keen on recruiting Erling Haaland in the Premier League. The Norwegian striker has played exceptionally for Borussia Dortmund this season and is unlikely to hold back against one of his potential destinations next season.

The Chelsea fans on social media were absolutely delighted by the Blue’s quarter final draw. However, they should not be too quick to celebrate considering FC Porto have shed light on their ability to unexpectedly succeed despite all odds in their performances against Juventus.

Regardless of the difficult time that the teams have faced this season, both Real Madrid and Liverpool have played some intriguing games in the past and are now set to compete against one another. Real Madrid is arguably the better team at the moment. The game will also see Mohamed Salah face Sergio Ramos for the first time since the latter’s infamous tackle in the UEFA Champions League final in 2018.

Even though Real Madrid have made their way into the UEFA champions league quarter finals, the Los Blancos are not the favourites to win the tournament this year. According to Marca, the La Liga giants have been named the sixth favourite by the bookmakers to win the tournament this season.

Real Madrid are the only La Liga side left in the tournament that now has three teams from the Premier League, two from the Bundesliga and one from the Primera Liga. According to the bookmakers, only the FC Porto and Borussia Dortmund have lesser chances of winning than the Spanish side.

Manchester City, Bayern Munich and Paris Saint-Germain are considered the favourites to lift the trophy. Liverpool and Chelsea are also placed ahead of Los Blancos. Real Madrid were eliminated from the Champions League in the Round of 16 by Manchester City last season. Since Los Blancos failed to strengthen their squad over the summer, their chances of winning seem very slight.

Eden Hazard, currently tending to his muscle injury, has only been able to play three out of the eight games of Real Madrid. Even if the Belgian player regains his strength, it’s unlikely that their chances of winning will increase.

Real Madrid were drawn in a tough group in the Champions League this season alongside Inter Milan, Borussia Monchengladbach, and Shakhtar Donetsk. However, the La Liga giants still managed to make it to the knockout stages of the competition. Zinedine Zidane’s wards won three of their six games in the group stages while losing twice, but they managed to top the group with ten points.

In the knockout stages, Los Blancos won the away leg against Atalanta 1-0 and then secured a 3-1 victory at the Santiago Bernabeu to win the tie 4-1 on aggregate. However, bookmakers are only offering a share of €11 per bet for Real Madrid winning the Champions League. It’s on the Zidane to surprise us and prove the critics wrong.

The quarter-final ties are set to be played across two legs, the first on 6-7 April and the second on 13-14 April. Venues for the ties will be confirmed in the upcoming days. However, due to the coronavirus pandemic, some teams might have to play at neutral venues.

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