The draw for the Champions League quarterfinals was held today at the headquarters of the European Football Federation (UEFA) in Nyon.
The draw was open and there were no seeded teams or “protected” pairs. Any team could be drawn against any other team.
Certainly one of the most interesting pairs is the clash between the current European champions Chelsea and the most trophy-winning European club Real Madrid. It will be a clash between two of Croatia’s best footballers – Luka Modrić and Mate Kovačić. Last season, Chelsea and Real Madrid met in the semifinals and the English club advanced with a 3:1 aggregate.
Manchester City will play against Atletico Madrid, Villarreal will meet Bayern, while Benfica will play against Liverpool.
The semifinal pairs were also drawn immediately. The winner of the Manchester City – Atletico Madrid match will play against the winner of the Chelsea and Real Madrid match.
In the second semifinal, the winners of Benfica – Liverpool, and Villarreal – Bayern Munich will play.
England (Liverpool, Manchester City, Chelsea) and Spain (Atletico Madrid, Real Madrid, Villarreal) will have three clubs in the quarterfinals, and Germany (Bayern) and Portugal (Benfica) will have one each.
Five Croatian footballers remain in the competition – Luka Modrić (Real), Mateo Kovačić (Chelsea), Šime Vrsaljko (Atletico Madrid), and Bayern’s reserves Josip Stanišić and Gabriel Vidović.
The first quarterfinal matches are scheduled for April 5 and 6, and the return matches are on April 12 and 13. The semifinals are on April 26 and 27, and the return matches are on May 3 and 4. The final is on May 28 at the Stade de France in Paris.
After the Champions League draw, the draw for the Europa League quarterfinals and semifinals follows from 13:30.
The eight best clubs in the Europa League are from Germany (Eintracht and Leipzig), and Italy (Atalanta), Spain (Barcelona), Portugal (Braga), France (Lyon), Scotland (Rangers), and England (West Ham) will have one representative each in the quarterfinals.
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