The draw in the quarter-finals of the Champions League did not give a shock at the summit, but two final rounds of the competition.
The draw of the quarterfinals of the Champions League, held Friday in Switzerland, gave four confrontations a priori unbalanced, the four remaining favorites of the competition being opposed to four outsiders. The first leg matches will be held on April 9th and 10th, the return a week later.
Thus, FC Barcelona will challenge Manchester United, in a showdown between the two scorers of the last French clubs in the round of 16. United will certainly have recovered its injured players for the first leg, but will not go favorite against Barca Lionel Messi. This match between two giants of European football will be a rehearsal, ten years later, of the final of the Champions League 2008-2009, won in Rome by the Catalans (2-0). Lionel Messi – scorer that night – and Gerard Piqué are the only two players still active in Barça to have participated in this duel.
In the semifinals, the qualified club will face the winner of the double confrontation between Liverpool and FC Porto. The English, clearly favorites, will however play the return match in Portugal.
Replay of the Juventus-Ajax final
In the other part of the table, there is again a repetition of an old final of the competition, between Juventus of Turin and Ajax Amsterdam. A surprise guest of the quarter-finals, Ajax dreams of repeating, at least, his feat of the 1995-1996 season, when his young – the Boer brothers, Jari Litmanen or Nwankwo Kanu – had only been beaten final on penalties by the Old Lady.
This time, Cristiano Ronaldo and the old defenders of the Turin defense could end much earlier the dreams of the teammates of Femke de Jong. The first leg will take place in the Netherlands, the return to Juventus Stadium.
In the semi-finals, the winner of this clash will face an English club: either Manchester City or Tottenham, both German club dead on the previous round – Schalke 04 for the first, Dortmund for the second. The return match will take place in England.