Champions League 2017/18: Road to Kyiv
It’s time when football fans turn their attention to the Champions League 2017/18 quarter-finals. It’s time when the key players get down to their business and play their best football.
Following are the teams playing in the quarter-finals this year. A brief assessment of each team has been laid down:
1. Bayern Munich(Ger)
One of the strongest sides on paper and on field. Loads of quality and experienced players. Boast of an almost full squad with their No.1 Manuel Neuer back in training. Thrashed Borussia Dortmund 6-0 in their latest encounter.
With James Rodriguez excelling in the playmaker role, a semi final spot looks assured.
Opponent: Sevilla (Esp)
Look out for: Robert Lewandowski, Thomas Müller
2. Juventus (Ita)
Will be looking forward to make their 3rd Final in 4 years. The team which probably has the most experienced players in the competition. The back lineof Juventus is one to beat which is full of Italian stalwarts. Beat rivals AC Milan3-1 in their last match. First goal conceded in the league since the turn of the year.
A meeting with the defending champions would be a real test.
Opponent: Real Madrid (Esp)
Watch out for: Paulo Dybala, Gonzalo Higuain
3. Liverpool (Eng)
Their performances in the competition has been a treat to football lovers. The attacking trio of Mohammed Salah *esp. him* , Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane has been in scintillating form this season.Their problems though arise in defence with Jürgen Klopp trying all he has.
A meeting with a familiar opponent would test their mettle.
Opponent: Manchester City (Eng)
Watch out for: Virgil van Dijk, Oxlade-Chamberlain
4. AS Roma (Ita)
Currently 3rd in Serie A, way behind leaders Juventus and Napoli. Qualified for the quarters beating Shaktar Donetsk on away goals. Have not played their best football recently, drawing away at Bologna.
Even though have a few good players in Radja Nainggolan, Stephen el Shaarawy,a spot in the semi final looks impossible.
Opponent: Barcelona (Esp)
Watch out for: Edin Dzeko, De Rossi
5. Barcelona (Esp)
Have lost just one game whole season. Look good to continue that level of performance again. The league title looks sealed and they look forward to another treble. Have got all bases covered. Last encounter against Seville ended in 2-2 draw with Lionel Messi coming of the bench to hold them level.
Semi final ticket all but confirmed.
Opponent: AS Roma (Ita)
Watch out for: Luis Suarez, Paulinho
6. Manchester City (Eng)
The Pep Guardiola’s team is billed as the one for glory this time. Have played amazing overall football this season and the PL trophy is all but confirmed. With Kevin de Bruyne and David Silva orchestrating the midfield and a really in form front three, most defences are bound to be tested.
Centre and Left Back positions are a concern. Were Outplayed at Anfield earlier this season.
Opponent: Liverpool (Eng)
Watch out for: Leroy Sane, Ederson
7. Real Madrid (Esp)
After a rather torrid season, their campaign looks back on track. Cristiano Ronaldo looks back to his best . Has scored in every CL game this season. The area of concern remains the midfield with Toni Kroos and Luka Modric not playing their best.
Zidane might have to turn to Isco for time being. A stern test awaits at Turin.
Opponent: Juventus (Ita)
Watch out for: Gareth Bale, Marco Asensio
8. Sevilla (Esp)
Provided the shock last round defeating Manchester United at Old Trafford. Though causing a further huge upset looks inconceivable with the German Giants knocking. Were pegged back by a Messi show last time out.
Have some good players but lack of finishing and play in the final third doesn’t help their cause. Will surely not progress.
Opponent: Bayern Munich (Ger)
Watch out for: Ben Yedder, Steven Nzonzi
Verdict: Champions League brings out the best in the players and upsets are always on the cards.
Following are the teams which have a good chance of progressing:
1. Bayern Munich