Champions League Quarter-Finals: Expect Fireworks at the Etihad

Manchester City must try to overturn a three-goal deficit from the first leg when they entertain Liverpool in the Champions League quarterfinal on Tuesday in what is sure to be a highly-charged Etihad Stadium.

Elsewhere, Real Madrid host Juventus in Spain, and the Italians also have a seemingly impossible task of overturning a 3-0 first leg reverse.

 

Manchester City v Liverpool (0-3)

Only two teams in the history of the Champions League have overturned a 3+ goal deficit from the first leg in the knockout stages – Deportivo v AC Milan in 2004 and Barcelona v PSG 12 months ago. That shows the magnitude of the task facing Manchester City.

That said, the tie would almost be in the balance had City scored at Anfield, but I can’t see them keeping a clean sheet against the Reds who have so much pace and power on the break.

 

I expect to see goals and Liverpool will miss both Emre Can (injured) and Jordan Henderson (suspended) but City old-boy James Milner has been a revelation in recent weeks for Jurgen Klopp’s side who I feel will do more than enough to be in Friday’s semi-final draw in Switzerland.

Tip: Over 3.5 goals at 37/40

 

Roma v Barcelona (1-4) 

I was not impressed by Barcelona in the first leg and it would be fair to say that the scoreline flattered the Catalan giants in the Nou Camp.

Luis Suarez scored a terrific goal – his first in 10 CL games – but he looked out of sorts for large periods of the first leg, and Roma have never lost at home to Barcelona. Indeed, Barcelona have not won any of their last six Champions League away games against Italian sides.

Etihad

I expect Barca to qualify but Roma to get at least a draw in the Italian capital.

Tip: Roma to either win or draw (Double chance) at 5/4

 

Bayern Munich v Sevilla (2-1) 

Sevilla have never reached the semi-finals of the Champions League and Bayern have won their last seven CL games so you would imagine things would be straightforward for the Bavarian giants in Munich.

That said, I didn’t think Bayern played particularly well in Spain and I am beginning to get quite excited about the prospects of my former clubs (Liverpool and Real Madrid).

Bayern have won 20 of their last 21 home games in the competition and they should be far too good for the La Liga side.

Tip: Bayern to win to nil at 5/4

 

Real Madrid v Juventus

Juventus have won two of their eight away games in the Bernabeu although one was back in 1962 and the other a decade ago. Real Madrid are looking to qualify for the last four of the competition for the eighth consecutive season – an extraordinary feat.

The whites have scored in their last 24 Champions League games – one might be enough to settle this tie.

Tip: Real Madrid to win at 3/5

 

My Champions League treble: Real Madrid and Bayern Munich to win, Roma Not To Lose at 7/2

 

*Odds were correct at time of publishing the article

Michael Owen

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Michael Owen is a former football player, played striker for Liverpool, Real Madrid, Newcastle United, Manchester United and Stoke City, as well as for the England national team.

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