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Actual in search of revenge in opposition to Metropolis in Champions League quarters

Real looking for revenge against City in Champions League quarters
Actual Madrid v Manchester Metropolis.

The all-time kings of Europe tackle the present holders within the standout tie of the Champions League quarter-finals.

For the third 12 months working Actual and Metropolis meet in a match-up through which the winner has gone on to carry the trophy prior to now two seasons. And it will be tough to look past both workforce occurring to proceed that streak this time round.

Metropolis are nonetheless in rivalry for back-to-back trebles after profitable the Premier League title, Cham­pions League and FA Cup final 12 months.

Actual, reinvigorated by the signing of Jude Bellingham final summer time, are eight factors clear on the high of La Liga and aiming for a record-extending fifteenth European Cup title.

The Spanish giants even have a degree to show after being routed 4-0 by Metropolis within the second leg of final 12 months’s semi-finals.

Then it was Metropolis who had a rating to settle, having suffered a late collapse on the Santiago Bernabeu to crash out within the semi-finals in 2022.

Supervisor Pep Guardiola will possible understand how motivated Actual shall be to precise revenge — simply as his gamers had been final 12 months — and that provides a subplot to a tie that’s already heavy on intrigue.

Actual host Metropolis on the Bernabeu on Tuesday in a mouthwatering first-leg conflict and Actual supervisor Carlo Ancelotti admitted he was quite anxious about going through the reigning champions for a 3rd 12 months working.

“I’m very nervous. The hours earlier than the match, on a private stage,” Ancelotti advised a information convention on Monday. “Is defeat struggling and victory, happiness? No, it’s actually a aid. As a result of the times after are calmer. Struggling is a part of the job, it retains you alive, it’s gas for me.

“Will probably be a horny soccer match, every workforce has its personal traits, with numerous high quality in each groups. This high quality will make for a really good match on a technical stage.”

Elsewhere, Paris Saint-Germain versus Barcelona is one other conflict of heavyweights — the primary leg of which shall be performed on Wedn­esday, with Kylian Mbappe aiming to lastly lead the French champions to European membership soccer’s elite trophy earlier than strolling away on the finish of the season.

Premier League title-chasing Arsenal tackle a Bayern Munich workforce that’s limping in direction of the top of a depressing marketing campaign within the Bundesliga on Tuesday, whereas Atletico Madrid face Borussia Dortmund a day later.


Actual have all of their attacking gamers clicking.

Bellingham has struck 20 targets in 32 video games this season, together with 4 within the Champions League. Vinicius Junior is peaking simply in time to face Metropolis with 5 targets in his final three appearances. Brahim Diaz offers a activate the bench. And Rodyrgo ended a six-week scoring drought in Madrid’s final recreation, a 2-0 win over Athletic Bilbao, to maintain it on target for profitable the home league title.

Actual are on a 27-game unbeaten run on the Bernabeu throughout all competitions relationship again to final April.

Ancelotti stated his workforce performed with out braveness or character when Metropolis knocked them out of the Champions League final season and referred to as on his gamers to point out extra psychological energy this time round.

“We performed with out braveness, with out character — braveness and character are basic in this sort of recreation, we lacked them within the second leg,” Ancelotti stated.

“The essential factor is to be at our greatest, the psychological facet is essential. By way of braveness and character, we’ve had time to organize for the sport, we’ve ready very nicely, and I’m assured that we are going to give our greatest and we’ve acquired the standard to compete.”

Metropolis have discovered their scoring type over the previous week after hitting 4 targets in every of its video games in opposition to Aston Villa and Crystal Palace to remain on the heels of title rivals Liverpool and Arsenal.


After a tough begin to his teaching profession at PSG, when he needed to put up with Mbappe’s bitter contract saga, Luis Enrique has steadily gained over followers and the French media — even when it meant dropping Mbappe or taking him off in video games.

Enrique gained the treble as Barcelona coach in 2015 with Lionel Messi in his workforce and continues to be in rivalry to do the identical at PSG with Mbappe.

Dropping has develop into a distant reminiscence for PSG, which is undefeated in 27 matches since a loss away to AC Milan in November in the course of the Champions League group stage. However enjoying a rested Barcelona aspect could possibly be the hardest check of the season.

Xavi Hernandez tried to shock his workforce into getting its act collectively by saying he would stop on the finish of the season, one thing that has coincided with a sure enchancment.

Barca have gone unbeaten in 11 straight video games since Xavi stated in late January that he was renouncing the ultimate 12 months of his contract.

Robert Lewandowski, teenager Lamine Yamal and Raphinha are all enjoying nicely of late, however the midfield is an enormous query mark on account of damage considerations.


Bayern coach Thomas Tuchel needs to finish a “irritating” season, and his tenure, on a excessive with a visit to Wembley for the Champions League ultimate. However their preparation for Arsenal may hardly have been worse after its newest defeat, this time to Heidenheim on Saturday after main 2-0.

Two-time Champions League winner Thomas Mueller stated his aspect may harness the frustration and unleash it on Tuesday.

“This consequence has me in preventing mode,” Mueller stated. “Self-pity doesn’t assist us in any respect. The resentment inside me is smiling once more.”

The temper at Arsenal may be very totally different with Mikel Arteta’s workforce wanting higher geared up to final the course within the race for the title this 12 months after a late collapse final season.

The Champions League run appears like an sudden bonus, however victory in opposition to Bayern will strengthen perception {that a} trophy double could possibly be on.

“We’re in a very good second. We now have the squad wholesome, with a very good power, with numerous confidence individually and collectively,” Arteta stated after Saturday’s Premier League win at Brighton & Hove Albion. “We simply have to hold on doing what we’re doing.”


Atletico have slumped in latest weeks, with six losses and solely 4 wins of their final 12 video games general, as they missed the targets and creativity of Antoine Griezmann. The France ahead is now again enjoying and shall be in search of his first purpose since Jan 18.

Diego Simeone’s aspect had been having fun with a 25-game unbeaten run at its Metropolitano Stadium till Barca delivered a 3-0 rout at Atletico on March 27.

Dortmund have usually saved their greatest for the Champions League this season however the Spanish aspect are the slight favorites and have a bonus of getting 10 days and not using a recreation to organize for the primary leg on the Atletico’s Metropolitano Stadium.

“It’s higher for us to have longer time to organize for such an essential recreation,” Atletico central defender Stefan Savic admitted within the El Mundo Deportivo newspaper. “I don’t know if it’s higher or not that the primary recreation is at house, as a result of if you happen to do a superb job within the first leg, it’s tough on your rival to overturn the consequence later. The massive factor is that we’re at house now.”

Champions League quarter-final first leg fixtures (all instances GMT):

Tuesday: Actual Madrid v Manchester Metropolis (1900), Arsenal v Bayern Munich (1900).

Wednesday: Paris St Germain v Barcelona (1900), Atletico Madrid v Borussia Dortmund (1900).