Spoiler Champions League wish list: Arsenal v Napoli and more!
If The Spoiler did Champions League draws...
The unnecessarily complex guides to how it all works, the use of two-minute video packages where five seconds of oral explanation would suffice and the unappreciated charm of draw master Gianni Infantino: The Spoiler loves nothing more than a UEFA draw.
To get the hype started early for Friday’s Champions League ball-grabbing festivities, here’s who we’d like to see face who in the round-of-16…
Bayern Munich v Lyon
Two knockout round frequenters, two potent attacks and the guarantee of at least one Bundesliga or Ligue 1 side in the quarter-finals. Everyone’s a winner.
Inter v Zenit
While Inter change coaches at the rate most move stadiums, one of Italy’s top tacticians, Luciano Spalletti, waits in Russia for his chance to lead a European giant. A victory here would boost his case.
Benfica v AC Milan
AC Milan will be eager to avoid visiting England after going out at this stage to Arsenal, Manchester United and Spurs in their last three campaigns. The Spoiler is a sensitive soul willing to assist, though this won’t be easy either.
Real Madrid v Leverkusen
It’s the end of an era in the Champions League as Real Madrid are unable to draw Lyon. Our plan B involves former final opponents with a perfect home record in this year’s competition.
Chelsea v CSKA Moscow
Roman Abramovich has some ties with CSKA Moscow, who will want revenge on Andre Villas-Boas for dumping them out of the Europa League last season. Bingo.
Arsenal v Napoli
Napoli are the most intriguing team of all 16, yet picking an opponent is tough as Real Madrid and Barcelona are a hefty step up, but they perform better in big games. Arsenal are the middle ground, so let’s see these two captivate for three hours.
APOEL v Basel
Everyone loves an underdog right? Well, at least until they actually win and the result is a one-sided quarter-final like APOEL v Barcelona. But Basel were the joint-best runners-up, so it would be nice to see that rewarded with a decent draw.
Barcelona v Marseille
Barcelona + French team = entertainment is a proven yet rarely tested Champions League formula, so we fancy seeing it put into action for the first time in three years.
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