Spanish rivals Real Madrid and Barcelona were kept apart in the Champions League Quarterfinal draw, with Madrid set to face Galatasaray and Barca to face David Beckham’s (the last Englishman in the competition) Paris Saint-Germain side. The two sides can still meet in the Semis or the Final, but for now, el Clasico fans will have to wait. The draw was held in Nyon, Switzerland on Friday with former Liverpool player and TV pundit Steve McManaman making the draws. The standout draw is Bayern Munich versus Juventus, with their contrast of styles leaving the tie open for either side to win. Malaga has been drawn with Borussia Dortmund, and with the German champions main focus now being this competition (because they are now out of the running for the Bundesliga title), the Spanish side will have their work cut out.
Barca came back from a 2-0 loss in the first leg to overcome AC Milan 4-0 in the second leg at the Nou Camp. Saint-Germain beat Valencia 3-2 on aggregate in the Round of 16, and managed a 1-1 draw in the second leg without main forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic (due to the Swede getting a red card in the first leg). Barca will be trying not to fall behind in the first leg like they did verses Milan, and Saint-Germian’s expensive attack could cause problems for the Blaugrana. Saint-Germian’s best chance of winning will be if they contain Lionel Messi (arguably the best player in the world), which worked wonders for Milan and Celtic at home earlier in the competition.
Manchester United will be woefully watching Real Madrid take on Galatasaray, with the Spanish champions only advancing to the Quarterfinals due to Nani getting an undeserved red card to put United down to ten men in the second leg of their tie. Madrid will be playing Didier Drogba and Wesley Snider’s Galatasaray side who narrowly defeated Schalke 04 (Gala won 4-3 on aggregate due to Umut Bulut’s injury time winner in the second leg) in the Round of 16. This season’s top two scorers in the Champions League will face off in this tie, with both Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo and Galatasaray’s Burak Yilmaz looking to score their ninth goals in this seasons competition. Madrid manager Jose Mourinho will be looking to become the first manager to win the competition with three different teams, having won with Portuguese side Porto and Italian side Internazionale. Former Madrid player and the drawer of the ties Steve McManaman commented on Madrid’s tie saying: “Real have had to do it the hard way so far- they have beaten a lot of good teams.”
The stand out tie, Bayern Munich versus Juventus will be the best to watch, with the two sides’ contrasting styles making the match there for the taking. Bayern are the more attacking side and Juventus have a more laid back style. Juventus reached the Quarterfinals by beating Celtic 5-0 on aggregate, with the Italian side not allowing a goal in the stage. Bayern beat Arsenal 3-1 in their Round of 16 first leg at the Emirates, but lost 2-0 in the second leg at the Allianz Arena and only advanced through away goals.
Borussia Dortmund will play Malaga, and with the Germans main focus now being this competition, Malaga will have their work cut out. The competition also shows Malaga’s good form, and the Spanish club have only lost once in the competition so far. Malaga came back from a 2-0 loss in the first leg of their Round of 16 tie with Porto to win 2-0 in the second leg and 2-1 on aggregate. Dortmund had to beat Shakhtar Donetsk to reach the Quarters, and the German side won 5-0 on aggregate with seven different players scoring for both sides.
Malaga vs Borussia Dortmund
Real Madrid vs Galatasaray
Paris Saint-Germain vs Barcelona
Bayern Munich vs Juventus