Champions League knockout: Preview, kickoff, fixtures, schedule
Champions League round of 16 encounters for the 2018/19 season will begin on Tuesday night, February 12, with two games lined up for football fans in many parts of the world to watch. Real Madrid who are the defending champions of this championship are also in the knockout stages of this competition as they face Ajax.
Los Blancos have been struggling since the departure of superstar Cristiano Ronaldo who joined Juventus, and they will have to up their games against the Dutch club. Today, we we shall preview all the eight matches that will played in the 2018/19 Champions League encounters.
1. Manchester United VS Paris-Saint
Germain Manchester United are currently in the best form of their lives since Ole Gunnar Solskjaer took over in December 2018 from Jose Mourinho, and the Red Devils will want to stretch their impressive performances to the Champions League. The last time United won the Champions League title was in the 2007/2008 season and they will face PSG side who will be without Brazilian star Neymar. United and PSG have never met before in the Champions League, and this maiden game will be interesting for all football fans.
2. Roma VS Porto
The Stadio Olimpico in Rome will be the venue where Roma will host FC Porto in what will be a tough Champions League battle between these two clubs. Porto impressed in the group stages thereby finishing with 16 points and Roma finished second behind last season's Champions League winners Real Madrid. 3. Tottenham VS Borussia Dortmund
Premier League giants Tottenham will welcome Bundesliga leaders Borussia Dortmund to the Wembley stadium on Wednesday, February 12, for the first leg of their Champions League round of 16 encounter. With the two sides both known for their work rates and fluid attacking play, this tie looks set to be one of the most mouthwatering of the knockout stages this season.
4. Ajax VS Real Madrid
The last time Ajax won the Champions League title was in the 1994/95 edition of the Championship, and since then, they have been struggling. Ajax ended the group stages as 1 of only 5 teams to remain unbeaten throughout, and they only finished 2 points behind Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich in the end. Real Madrid on the other hand struggled in the group stages due to the departure of Cristiano Ronaldo, and their credentials will be put to test against the Dutch side.
5. Lyon VS Barcelona
French club Lyon have previously faced Barcelona six times with the Spanish club winning four games, while the other two ties ended in draw. Barcelona have been impressive this season in all competitions, and it will be difficult for Lyon to overcome the Spanish champions in the two games.
6. Liverpool VS Bayern Munich
This will be the toughest ties in the Champions League round of 16 as last season's runners-up Liverpool will face German giants Bayern Munich. These two teams both scored three goals in their last encounters and this tie will be the battle of strikers with the likes of Mohamed Salah, Sadio Mane and Firmino expected to be in great form
7. Schalke VS Manchester City
Schalke's last three Champions League campaigns have all ended in the round of 16 and they will be keen to make the most of home advantage as they welcome Manchester City for the first leg of their knockout tie. Premier League champions Manchester City are in the knockout stages for the sixth year in a row, and have won two of their last three round of 16 ties.#
8. Atletico Madrid VS Juventus
These two teams have reached the final twice in the past five seasons with Atletico losing to neighbors Real Madrid in 2014 and 2016 whereas Juventus were beaten by Barcelona in 2015 and Real Madrid two years later. Juventus will be boosted with the arrival of Cristiano Ronaldo who joined the club from Real Madrid, but Atletico also have two dangerous strikers Diego Costa and Antoine Griezmann.
Earlier, Legit.ng had reported how Portugal international Cristiano Ronaldo told Juventus' chiefs to give him three more bodyguards for himself and his family in Italy. The superstar is reportedly concerned about the safety of himself and his family as he has been swarmed by fans since his move to Turin from Real Madrid. One of these three men will be monitoring his house in the Gran Madre Park, while the other two guards will be looking after him and his family.
Read more: https://www.legit.ng/1221135-champions-league-knockout-preview-kickoff-fixtures-schedule.html