Looking at the Champions League’s Second Quarterfinal Slate


Real Madrid is training to ensure that they start the knockout stages on the right track. (Courtesy of Twitter)

Next Tuesday and Wednesday, the Champions League round of 16 will continue with the other eight teams playing their matches. As a reminder, the round of 16 consists of two matches. The first will be played at one stadium, with the second match taking place at the other stadium. In order to determine who will advance into the quarter-finals, whichever team wins on aggregate will advance. If the aggregate is even, then it will go to any teams that scored away goals. If one team scored more away goals on an equal aggregate, then they will advance. If it is still equal, then it goes to extra time in the second match, which is an additional 30 minutes, followed by a penalty shootout if necessary. 

The second half of the matches are defending champions Bayern Munich vs. Lazio, Atletico Madrid vs. Chelsea, Borussia Monchengladbach vs. Manchester City and Real Madrid vs. Atalanta. The Bayern match as well as the Atletico match will be played on Tuesday, and the other two matches will be on Wednesday.

I would say that the best game will be Atletico Madrid vs. Chelsea. Currently, Atletico are leading the Spanish league and they are the current favorites of winning the title with their striker Luis Suarez, who has scored 16 goals across 26 games in all competitions. Their coach, Diego Simeone, favors an ultra-defensive style of play, making it extremely hard for opposing teams to break through and score goals. As for Chelsea, they are currently thriving under new coach Thomas Tuchel, winning their past five games across all competitions. Chelsea has a lot of attacking options, so it should be a good match; it’s anyone’s guess as to who will win. As for Bayern Munich, I easily expect them to win. They just completed the sextuple, winning all six possible trophies in a calendar year. They should make quick work of Lazio, but in the Champions League, anything is possible. Furthermore, their main striker Robert Lewandowski is on fire, scoring 30 goals in 29 games across all competitions.

As for the Wednesday matches, Manchester City should easily take care of Monchengladbach. City are currently on a 16 game winning streak across all competitions and are first in the Premier League. City’s attacking options are plentiful and with their defense clicking, I don’t see a way for Monchengladbach to have a chance over the two matches. Real Madrid are the favorites, but it should be an interesting match against Atalanta. Madrid barely won their group, but the 13-time champion league winners should have it in the bag. With two legs, it’s vital that each team gets off to a good start. And if they don’t, they can kiss their chance of being the best team in Europe and winning the Champions League goodbye.