Recently, the Champions League draw for both the quarterfinals and semifinals took place and Bayern Munich, Manchester City and co. found out their potential routes to the final. The QF’s, taking place in April, are set to contain some fantastic matchups, with Borussia Dortmund vs Man City, Bayern Munich vs PSG, Real Madrid vs Liverpool and Chelsea vs Porto as the four ties.
I asked some of BFW’s writers to give me, a, their predictions in terms of aggregate scores for the ties and b, some reasoning behind these predictions. Here’s what we had to say:
Bayern Munich vs PSG
Chuck: Bayern Munich over Paris Saint-Germain (5-2 aggregate)
This is going to be a complete and utter battle. I think Bayern Munich is better and deeper, but absolutely cannot afford to have any defensive lapses against such a potent PSG side. It will not be as easy as the score line makes it sound.
Fergus: Bayern Munich over Paris Saint-Germain (6-3 aggregate)
Bayern will definitely concede a few goals but I’m expecting their offence, statistically one of European football’s best ever, will come up with the goods yet again and deliver 5 or 6 goals in this tie. While PSG will pose problems against Bayern’s leaky defense, the French (Qatari?) team haven’t actually been that great this season. Ultimately, I think this game will be easier than many expect for the Bavarians.
Schnitzel: Bayern Munich over Paris Saint-German (6-3 aggregate)
PSG’s attack does give me nightmares, and the state of our defense this season hasn’t given me much to hope for, but Bayern should get the job done. A 10 man Bayern dispatched Stuttgart with four unanswered goals... Bayern knows how to turn up in the UCL in style, and I just think they’ll put in a performance with more expertise and efficiency and seal qualification.
Chelsea vs Porto
Chuck: Chelsea over FC Porto (4-2 aggregate)
Thomas Tuchel has brought more of that famed Germany engineering to England and installed some systems and ideas to make Chelsea far more dangerous and efficient. Porto is not a pushover, but Chelsea seems primed to put its newfound commitment to defense on display.
Fergus: Chelsea over FC Porto (3-1 aggregate)
Chelsea will be tight at the back and should win this tie.
Schnitzel: Chelsea over FC Porto (2-1 aggregate)
This is the direct opposite of the Pool-Real tie in terms of tactics. Both teams are super solid defensively, and will be looking to defend with their lives. However, Chelsea have the edge here because of their super stacked attack: Mason Mount, Hakim Ziyech, Christian Pulisic, Kai Havertz, Timo Werner, Tammy Abraham, and Olivier Giroud present Tuchel with too many weapons up front to get the goals required.
Real Madrid vs Liverpool
Chuck: Liverpool over Real Madrid (4-3 aggregate)
I think this match up will actually be great, but it is not getting nearly enough hype because everyone is tired of Real Madrid and Liverpool has been a on a really, really bad dip in form. All that said, Jürgen Klopp’s side is just more dangerous at this stage.
Fergus: Real Madrid over Liverpool (3-3 away goals aggregate)
Liverpool have been pretty dreadful in recent months, the team having wild similarities to the struggles Jürgen Klopp experienced in his final Dortmund season. It really feels like this is the end of the line for this Pool side who are very beatable, even for a weak Madrid team. This should be a close, not overly high scoring game.
Schnitzel: Liverpool over Real Madrid (4-3 aggregate)
This is a game featuring a lot of European pedigree, with both Liverpool and Real Madrid having won the UCL multiple times in the past, and given the state of the defenses of both teams, will be one tactical tussle to look out for. However, I give Liverpool’s attack and their motivation to get revenge the edge in this tie. Mo Salah in particular will be looking to humiliate Ramos for last time.
Man City vs Borussia Dortmund
Chuck: Manchester City over Borussia Dortmund (5-3 aggregate)
Pep Guardiola’s team is looking like a machine, while Eden Terzic’s squad features an actual machine in Erling Haaland. Haaland is going to create a lot of issues for City, but overall, Kevin De Bruyne and company are just operating far better as a unit than Dortmund could ever hope to at this stage of the season. Cue up even more people realizing just good Haaland is, but also just as many acknowledging City is a major problem in this tournament.
Fergus: Borussia Dortmund over Manchester City (4-4 away goals aggregate)
Many people regard this as an easy advance for the Citizens, and yes, while City have numerous advantages like their oil money funded squad and the familiarity of playing with minimal fans, Dortmund have one of the best players in the world in Haaland. Ultimately, i this as a tie which could really go either way — with Man City’s dominating football sure to overwhelm a fragile Dortmund defense, but also Dortmund’s lively attack sure to counter attack City.
Schnitzel: Borussia Dortmund over Manchester City (4-3 aggregate)
This prediction depends heavily on whether Jadon Sancho and Raphael Guerreiro will be fit in time to face City. That being said, I feel this would be another instance when Guardiola overprepares for Haaland and his supporting cast, playing a more defensive, cautious style. This could implode on their faces, with Haaland, Sancho and co. doing what they do best with aplomb, regardless of being pitted against a superb defensive pairing in Rúben Dias and John Stones.
This concludes our predictions. Which clubs do you think will win? Let us know in the comments!