We’re onto the Quarter Finals stage of the competition, and things are starting to shape up nicely. I already did a Round of 16 prediction (with a mixed bag of right and wrong guesses), so it’s about time I do the Quarters as well.
You can see my previous predictions linked below, as well as an array of other lists and rankings:
RECAP – My Round of 16 Predictions:
Before we do the Quarters, let’s assess how my previous predictions fared. It was a bit of a mixed bag with my guesses, but here is how I thought the aggregate scores would play out:
Red Bull Salzburg vs Bayern Munich* (1-7)
Salzburg gave me a scare when they drew to Bayern on their home turf, but then Bayern swept the floor with them in the return fixture. The real aggregate score-line was 2-8, so I wasn’t far off at all.
Benfica vs Ajax* (2-3)
Probably the biggest shock of the round, so I don’t think anyone can blame me for predicting this one wrong.
Ajax were supposed to be the dark horses of the tournament with their young crop of talent and great manager, but somehow Benfica managed to turn my prediction on its head with a close 3-2 aggregate score. One of two predictions I got wrong.
Atletico Madrid vs Manchester United* (0-2)
This prediction, on the other hand, was completely my fault.
Being a deluded Manchester United fan, I stupidly thought we had a chance. We were battered over both legs, and only scored one lucky breakaway goal across 180 minutes. We lost 2-1 in the end, but it should have been worse.
Inter Milan vs Liverpool* (1-6)
While I think most people could have predicted Liverpool going through, Inter certainly made them work for it.
A comfortable 0-2 win for Liverpool away seemed like business as usual, but Inter put up a fight in the second leg to claw it back to 1-2 and just miss out on the next round – not quite the 1-6 annihilation I predicted.
Sporting Lisbon vs Manchester City* (3-4)
Conversely, I thought Sporting Lisbon were going to put up more of a fight than they actually did in the end.
Manchester City were all over them in Portugal, winning 0-5 away, and the score-line could have widened in the second leg if City had actually bothered.
Chelsea* vs Lille (3-0)
I pretty much got this one bang on, as I knew Chelsea would cruise into the next round with comfortable score-lines in both legs.
The real score of 4-1 is slightly off from 3-0, but it’s close enough for me to give myself a pat on the back.
Villarreal* vs Juventus (4-4)
I may or may not have forgotten that away goals had been scrapped this year, so the next two predictions were always going to be slightly off … but they were both still pretty good regardless.
I was one of the few people who actually thought Villarreal would beat Juventus, and I was right. While 4-1 was a bit of a harsh score-line in the end, Villarreal have certainly proved their point to other big teams who want to take them on.
PSG vs Real Madrid* (3-3)
Again, I forgot that away goals weren’t a thing anymore, but I was damn close with my final prediction anyway.
Somehow, I knew in the back of my mind that PSG would crumble and let Real go through – but I didn’t expect it to be as catastrophic as it was. Their comfortable 2-0 lead turned to 2-3 in an instant, and proved that Benzema is still one of the best strikers in world football.
Now that the recap is out of the way, let’s crack on with my new batch of predictions …
Benfica vs Liverpool
Benfica have already proved all of their doubters wrong by knocking out Ajax, one of the strongest teams in the whole competition … but I think their fairytale run will come to an end in Merseyside.
Liverpool will barely scrape by with a 0-1 win in England, before having a stronger second leg and come out the 1-3 victors in Portugal. That’ll make it 1-4 on aggregate, with Liverpool through to the semis – let’s see if Benfica can prove me wrong again.
My Prediction – LIVERPOOL
Manchester City vs Atletico Madrid
From one Manchester club to another, but I reckon Atletico will have a slightly tougher time with City than they did with United.
Atletico will shock everyone by drawing 1-1 in Manchester, AND also draw 1-1 in Spain … in normal time. Pep Guardiola’s side will nick a goal in added time, making it 2-1 [a.e.t.] to City and sending them through (barely).
My Prediction – MANCHESTER CITY
Chelsea vs Real Madrid
One of the toughest match-ups of the lot, and Chelsea have never actually lost to Real Madrid in a European competition before – could that change soon?
Chelsea will hold firm at Stamford Bridge, winning a close game 1-0 to take the advantage to Spain. It’ll all backfire in Madrid though, with the 13-time champions winning 0-2 to put them up 1-2 on aggregate, sending them through to the next round.
At this rate, and with the mighty PSG (and maybe the previous champions Chelsea, if my prediction holds true) falling to them in this campaign, I wouldn’t be surprised if Real Madrid won the whole thing.
My Prediction – REAL MADRID
Villarreal vs Bayern Munich
Villareal are arguably the biggest underdogs of the lot, as they have to face-off against the mighty Bayern Munich. They made short work of Juventus, like I predicted, so it’s not impossible to think that Villarreal could surprise us again.
Bayern have too much quality in their squad I feel, so it should be a comfortable 1-3 in the first leg and 0-2 in the second, making it 1-5 on aggregate. Again, it really depends on if Bayern show up or not, as they displayed brief moments of sloppiness in their first game against Salzberg. Still, should be a routine win to take them to the semis.
My Prediction – BAYERN
So there you have it, not too many shocks this time around – but the Champions League is where dreams are made of, so who knows what’ll happen when the eight teams finally clash?
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