Anyone who believes there is anything other than poor job performance in the void UEFA Champions League draw must wait until the end of the period to be assured that the first person is simply beaten. broken.
Because the last match predicted for the upcoming Champions League round of 16 is Real Madrid vs Paris Saint-Germain.
Does anyone really think UEFA wants to tie it to the team that has won the tournament more times than any other team?
It would be a great TV show to see Real Madrid in another meeting with seven-time Ballon d’Or winner Lionel Messi, their fierce rival during his 17 seasons at FC Barcelona.
But Real Madrid have really struggled in this process, which was caused by an error involving Manchester United in the initial draw that UEFA blamed on a software glitch.
Draws are conducted by selecting teams from the runner-up pool first, then checking a computer program that shows which of the group’s champions they qualified for. Teams cannot face opponents from their own country or the groups in which they compete. Mistakes were made with both Manchester United and Liverpool being placed in the draws for which they did not qualify.
After UEFA announced the results of the initial draw would be abandoned, according to football journalist Arancha Rodriguez, Real Madrid lobbied UEFA to resume the draw at the time the first error was made and to keep the matches. was placed on the board.
One of them: Real Madrid vs. Benfica.
UEFA did not agree to this request because it could not guarantee that the glitch did not affect other parts of the draw.
So instead of Real Madrid taking on Benfica, who are currently third in Portugal’s Primeira Liga and have picked up eight points in Group E to finish second behind Bayern Munich, Real will face PSG, who are on the run. Ligue 1 championship in France. and lost to the top team of Group A, Manchester City, by exactly 1 point.
Benfica have won just two of their past five Champions League games and finished with a goal difference of minus 2 in their group. In two matches against Bayern, Benfica lost with the final score 9-2.
Paris Saint-Germain split their encounters with Man City in the group stage. PSG has the presence of world superstars such as Lionel Messi, Neymar, Kylian Mbappe and reigning goalkeeper of the year Gianluigi Donnarumma. Also on the team is former Madrid captain Sergio Ramos, who has previously vowed to never join a team that competes with Madrid.
After winning the title in 2016, 2017 and 2018, Real Madrid have only made it past the round of 16 once in the past three tournaments, when last year Los Merengues lost to champions Chelsea in the semi-finals.
In 2020, another tough draw – against Man City – knocked out the Spanish giants.
PSG could also be feeling a bit sad about the draw again, although they have put themselves in this situation by not being able to win their group.
Here’s how the draw results for the eight group champions:
|Winning team||Initial draw opponent||Final draw opponent||Harder / Easier?|
|City of Manchester||Villarreal||Sporting Lisbon||Tougher|
|Liverpool||RB Salzburg||Inter Milan||Tougher|
|Real Madrid||Benfica||Paris Saint-Germain||Tougher|
|Bayern Munich||Atlético Madrid||RB Salzburg||Easier|
|Manchester United||Paris Saint-Germain||Atlético Madrid||Easier|