Champions League News and analysis
So, the UEFA champions League semi-final fixtures have been drawn. Let us analyse the fixtures. Bayern Munich will face FC Barcelona (FCB vs FCB!) and Real Madrid will face Borussia Dortmund. Ironically, Pep Guardiola’s ex-club is set to lock horns with the club he is set to join in next summer! It will be interesting to see which club he would like to win and reach the final.
Both the semi-final ties are mouth watering. Each team has had its moments of ups and downs. FC Barcelona famously were defeated by Celtic and AC Mian. They also had to work their ass off to beat PSG. They weren’t impressive against PSG and advanced to the semi-finals on away goals. Also, they had been lack-lustre without their talisman- Lionel Messi. Against PSG, Barca were losing before a ‘not fully fit’ Messi came on and turned things around for them. But one shouldn’t dare to write off the Blaugrana. They still have what it takes to win the holy grail of European football. It is quite evident from the way they beat AC Milan 4-0.
Bayern have already won the Bundesliga. This is an advantage for them, because now, they can focus on champions League. They have been the most consistent team among the semi-finalists. They slumped to a shock defeat against BATE. But they were very impressive against Juventus, beating the Old Lady in both the ties. They have a very good squad and their bench strength is also good. It will be interesting to see two technically excellent sides- FC Bayern Munchen and FC Barcelona, take on each other.
Borussia Dortmund dominated the Bundesliga for last two seasons. This time around, their bitter rivals FC Bayern Munich have displaced them off that thrown. So, they will be desperate to win this piece of silverware at any cost! Borussia have been very impressive in the Champions League. They topped the group of death consisting of Real Madrid, Manchester City and Ajax- each champions of their respective leagues! The way they outplayed the likes of Madrid and Manchester City shows the tactical awareness of their coach Jurgen Klopp. They have a bunch of exiting players like Reus, Matts Hummels, Neven Subotic, Gundogan, Goetze and more.
Real Madrid have reached the semi-finals by surviving the group of death and later overcoming the stiff battle against Manchester United and Galatasaray. Their domestic campaign has not been very impressive. But they are desperately seeking the La Decima- the tenth Champions League trophy. Real have an excellent tactician in Jose Mourinho. They faced a string of tough matches- against Barcelona and Man Utd in quick succession and came out with flying colors. They beat FC Barcelona two times in a row. With the league title out of their sight, they will be eyeing Champions League this time. Further, manager Jose is notorious for winning Champions League with a host of clubs he managed, with Chelsea being the only exception!
So, we will have to wait and see which teams will make it to the finals. Will it be an El-Classico final,an all German final or a German vs Spanish final? Let’s wait for the semi-finals to get over.