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SPORTS

Champions League draw: Man United face Bayern Munich and Chelsea take on PSG in quarter-finals

SPORTS By -AFP, AP and BBC | March 22nd 2014

Chelsea face PSG as Spanish champions Barcelona play La Liga rivals Atletico and Real meet Dortmund in Champions League quarters

 

 

NYON

Defending champions Bayern Munich drew Manchester United in a repeat of the classic 1999 Champions League final as a star-studded quarter-final draw was made in Nyon on Friday.

Four-time champions Barcelona will play the first leg at the Nou Camp against La Liga rivals Atletico Madrid in an all-Spanish blockbuster while Chelsea tackle Paris Saint-Germain with the first leg in the French capital.

Real Madrid continue their quest for a record-extending 10th European Cup against 2013 finalists Borussia Dortmund.

Runaway Bundesliga leaders Bayern will relish the chance of taking on a United side that snatched a 2-1 victory from the jaws of defeat in the 1999 Barcelona-hosted final.

For the first time, all eight group winners from the pool round have advanced to this stage of the competition in an explosive quarter-final line-up.

Cristiano Ronaldo goes into Real’s match against Dortmund with 13 goals, one short of Lionel Messi’s record for Champions League strikes in one season.

All-time mark

Argentina’s Messi is on 67 Champions League career goals and just four short of the all-time mark held by Spaniard Raul as Barcelona take on Atletico Madrid.

First leg matches will be played April 1/2 with the return fixtures slated for April 8/9 before the draw for the semi-finals on April 11.

The final will be played at Benfica’s Stadium of Light on Saturday May 24.Bayern beat United on away goals in the 2009-10 quarter-finals, ending the English club’s hopes of reaching a third successive final.

“We can’t allow United’s current position in the Premier League table to affect our mindset for this game,” said Bayern skipper Philipp Lahm after Friday’s draw in Switzerland.

“We’ll travel to Manchester to play attacking football and score goals. I don’t think it matters if you play the away leg first.”

The Ligue 1 champions, with Sweden striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic as their spearhead, are eight points clear of nearest rivals Monaco as they aim to retain their domestic title.

Chelsea are unbeaten in their two previous Champions League meetings with PSG — in Blues Mourinho’s first season at Stamford Bridge.

The west London club won 3-0 in Paris before a 0-0 home draw in the 2004-05 group stage.

Three Spanish clubs reached the quarterfinals and at least one will make it to the semifinals. While Barcelona has had an irregular season, it has excelled in the Champions League but has yet to beat Atletico in three meetings this season.

Jose Mourinho will need to come up with a strategy to stop Zlatan Ibrahimovic when English leader Chelsea travels across the channel to face French champion PSG in the first leg.

Dortmund lost to German rival Bayern in last year’s final after eliminating Madrid, which hosts the first leg following an unbeaten run of 31 games in all competitions.          

                       ––AFP, AP and BBC

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