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Chelsea face Real, Liverpool meet Benfica in Champions League quarters

Last updated on: March 18, 2022 22:46 IST
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The UEFA Champions League draw that was out on Friday

IMAGE: The UEFA Champions League draw that was out on Friday. Photograph: Twitter

The Champions League draw threw up a mouthwatering range of possibilities on Friday as troubled holders Chelsea were pitched against 13-time winners Real Madrid in the quarter-finals.

 

The three Premier League and three La Liga clubs in the last eight avoided each other, with Manchester City up against Atletico Madrid and Liverpool to face Portuguese side Benfica.

Bayern Munich will play Villarreal.

Friday's draw also incorporated the semi-final line-ups which could see Chelsea face Manchester City in a repeat of last season's final or a potential Madrid derby.

Liverpool or Benfica will face Bayern or Villarreal.

The quarter-final first legs take place on April 5-6 with the return legs the following week.

Former Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti will return to his old club for the first leg and current Stamford Bridge boss Thomas Tuchel described the challenge as a "tough one".

As things stand, Chelsea will not have any fans at either leg after UEFA said it would uphold EU sanctions against Russian owner Roman Abramovich who has had his assets frozen since announcing he was selling the club.

"The challenge cannot be higher," Tuchel told reporters on Friday.

"Playing the second leg in the Bernabeu with spectators is a big challenge. We know what's coming, but there is a big excitement around this fixture.

"It's nice to avoid the English clubs, it's always nice to play European teams."

Asked about the prospect of having no Chelsea fans at either leg, Tuchel said: "In general I think this game changes so much with spectators so hopefully we find a solution and I'm pretty sure everyone at the club, the board, will fight for a chance."

"Hopefully we make it happen somehow."

Real Madrid, beaten by Chelsea in last season's semi-finals, are 10 points clear at the top of La Liga while Tuchel's side are third in the Premier League.

Liverpool will consider a clash with Benfica as the best option from the draw and they could even face Premier League title rivals Manchester City in the final in Paris.

City will have to get past the considerable challenge of Spanish champions Atletico Madrid though -- a clash that will be a fascinating contrast in styles and a tactical battle between Pep Guardiola and Diego Simeone.

"We have to be clever, we know they will have the chances to score," City manager Pep Guardiola said on Friday. "We go to a nice stadium, incredible stadium and we go to try and reach the semi-final, hopefully they are worried to play against us."

It will be the first meeting between the two clubs.

Liverpool manager Juergen Klopp played down talk that his side had got the soft option in Benfica, especially with the second leg at Anfield.

"I know people will say we are the favourites and stuff like this, but that's already the first mistake you could make," he said on Friday.

"We are too long in the business now to make these kinds of mistakes."

Bayern Munich will also not be under-estimating a Villarreal side who knocked out Juventus in the last 16.

"They showed in the round of 16 what they're capable of," warned CEO Oliver Kahn. "For that reason we have to be on our guard and approach the task with full concentration. No one can think that they'll be two easy games."

Following is the Champions League draw for the quarter-finals and semi-finals, held in Nyon on Friday.

Quarter-final 1: Chelsea v Real Madrid

Quarter-final 2: Manchester City v Atletico Madrid

Quarter-final 3: Villarreal v Bayern Munich

Quarter-final 4: Benfica v Liverpool

Semi-final 1: Manchester City/Atletico Madrid v Chelsea/Real Madrid

Semi-final 2: Benfica/Liverpool v Villarreal/Bayern Munich

* Team drawn first will play the first leg at home.

SCHEDULE

Quarter-finals

First legs: April 5-6

Second legs: April 12-13

Semi-finals

First legs: April 26-27

Second legs: May 3-4

Final

May 28 at the Stade de France, Paris.

Barcelona to face Frankfurt in Europa quarters, West Ham get Lyon

Former European champions Barcelona were drawn against German side Eintracht Frankfurt in the quarter-finals of the second-tier Europa League on Friday while West Ham United face a tough challenge against Olympique Lyonnais.

Barcelona beat Napoli and Galatasaray in the previous rounds under new coach Xavi Hernandez while Frankfurt eliminated Real Betis in a tense tie that went to extra time in the second leg.

The two German sides avoided each other after RB Leipzig were drawn against Italian side Atalanta.

Leipzig did not play the last round after their opponent Spartak Moscow were thrown out of the competition by European soccer governing body UEFA due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

West Ham, who beat former champions Sevilla in the last round, are eyeing their first European trophy since 1999 when they lifted the UEFA Intertoto Cup but have to get past Lyon who beat Portuguese side Porto.

Braga will meet high-flying Rangers who knocked out Borussia Dortmund and Red Star Belgrade.

Europa League quarter-final and semi-final draw

Following is the Europa League draw for the quarter-finals and semi-finals, held in Nyon on Friday.

Quarter-final 1: RB Leipzig vs Atalanta

Quarter-final 2: Eintracht Frankfurt vs Barcelona

Quarter-final 3: West Ham United vs Olympique Lyonnais

Quarter-final 4: SC Braga vs Rangers

Semi-final 1: RB Leipzig/Atalanta vs SC Braga/Rangers

Semi-final 2: West Ham United/Olympique Lyonnais vs Eintracht Frankfurt/Barcelona

* Team drawn first will play the first leg at home.

SCHEDULE

Quarter-finals

First leg: April 7

Second leg: April 14

Semi-finals

First leg: April 28

Second leg: May 5

Final

May 18 at Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium, Seville.

Europa Conference League quarter-final and semi-final draw

Following is the Europa Conference League draw for the quarter-finals and semi-finals, held in Nyon on Friday.

Quarter-final 1: Bodo/Glimt v AS Roma

Quarter-final 2: Feyenoord v Slavia Prague

Quarter-final 3: Marseille v PAOK

Quarter-final 4: Leicester City v PSV Eindhoven

Semi-final 1: Leicester or PSV v Bodo/Glimt or Roma

Semi-final 2: Feyenoord or Slavia Prague v Marseille or PAOK

* Team drawn first will play the first leg at home.

SCHEDULE

Quarter-finals

First leg: April 7

Second leg: April 14

Semi-finals

First leg: April 28

Second leg: May 5

Final

May 25 at Arena Kombetare, Tirana, Albania

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