It’s not that there aren’t any English teams involved, but this year’s Champions League quarter final draw is just…so…boring.
There were only so many variations of how the round could have turned out, but following the excitement we’ve enjoyed so far, it’s all come about as being so predictable.
A meeting between Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid would normally be a mouth watering affair, but so soon in the competition it just lends itself to be a bit flat. There’s not enough on the line for it to really matter, especially when they also have the La Liga title race to contend with.
Last season’s final was a true spectacle, strange, tense affair that was only opened up thanks to a late flurry of goals. With the domestic league still wide open, there may be a danger of one of the sides prioritising one over the other.
Elsewhere, Spain’s other participant, Barcelona, will resume their ongoing competition with PSG. Both teams won one game apiece in the group stages, which was great, but where’s the mystery, where’s the fun in comparing the two and wondering how they will deal with each other when we already know the answer?
The only saving grace about that tie is we will get to see how PSG cope without Zlatan for the first leg after he was handed a one-match ban from Uefa.
There will be an easy pass for Juventus. Some might argue that after Monaco dumped Arsenal out of the tournament that anything could happen, but being realistic, Juve will be far too strong for the French side. Their movement going forward is too strong, and their defensive awareness means the Ligue 1 side will be getting off the train very quickly.
However, the one saving grace of the round will be Bayern vs Porto. On paper it seems as though the Bundesliga giant will sweep through, but Porto are perennial dark horses and famously over perform in European competition.
They have players to cause Pep Guardiola headaches, and should they get off to a strong start at home then the return leg in Germany could be far from a foregone conclusion.