Tough Champions League draws for Premier League Clubs

Tough Champions League draws for Premier League Clubs

Thursday’s UEFA Champions League quarter-final draw produced two mouth-watering ties for the Premier League clubs but did little to raise hopes of an all-English final at Wembley in May.

The pick of the quarter-finals is the tie between Chelsea and Manchester United with the first leg being played at Stamford Bridge in under three weeks time and the second leg at Old Trafford a week later. The news brought a smile to the face of Sir Alex Ferguson who was at the races to see his horse, What A Friend, contest the Cheltenham Gold Cup. United have a good record against English sides in the Champions League having beat Arsenal home and way in 2009 and of course, United beat Chelsea on penalties in the 2008 final in Moscow.

Harry Redknapp will go head-to-head with Jose Mourinho as Tottenham face the daunting task of getting past Spanish giants Real Madrid. Tottenham have already knocked out one of Europe’s biggest clubs when scraping past AC Milan and handed the reigning Champion’s Inter Milan a heavy beating at White Hart Lane in the group stages and will believe anything is possible at this stage of the competition.

Champions League favourites Barcelona will expect to go through having drawn one of the outsiders for the Trophy, Shakhtar Donetsk and holders Inter Milan also fared well in the draw and will play Bundesliga side Schalke who are currently in the bottom half of their domestic league.

The semi-finals draw was made at the same time and the winners of Chelsea v Manchester United will face either Inter or Schalke leaving a potential meeting between the two Spanish clubs in the other semi-final, unless Redknapp and Spurs can pull off another European miracle.

The odds for all three English clubs drifted out as result of the draw and Barcelona shortened to around even money with Real Madrid the clear second favourites at typical odds of 4/1.

QUARTER-FINAL DRAW:
Real Madrid v Tottenham
Chelsea v Man Utd
Barcelona v Shakhtar
Inter Milan v Schalke
First legs to take place on 5th/6th April, second legs on 12th/13th April
SEMI-FINAL DRAW:
Inter/Schalke v Chelsea/Man Utd
Real/Tottenham v Barcelona/Shakhtar
First legs to take place on 26th/27th April, second legs on 3rd/4th May
 
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