The main aim for every team in the Champions League group stages is simply to find a way through the group, but you really want to be finishing first to guarantee a seeded spot in the next round.
It means they’ll be drawn against a team who finished second in their group, so it should mean that they receive an easier tie.
Obviously every team who makes it to the knockout stages is going to offer a stern test, but the English sides will be fully aware that some games will be harder than others.
Liverpool, Chelsea and Man City all won their group, but it actually looks like the danger lies with some of the emerging sides instead of the traditional big names in the next round.
Barcelona are the biggest name on paper and usually you want to avoid them in the competition, but they’re a disaster just now under Ronald Koeman and they appear to be there for the taking.
The one to avoid has to be Atletico Madrid – Liverpool found out how dangerous they can be in last year’s competition and their willingness to fight and defend means they can beat anyone over two legs.
There would also be some danger in drawing Monchengladbach, Atalanta, Lazio, Sevilla or RB Leipzig especially when you consider that the seeded team plays away from home first. You would expect the underdog would need to produce a big win in their home game to stand a chance, but it’s easy to see all of those sides being capable of that.
The “easiest” draw appears to be a Porto side who are stout defensively but lack the firepower to outscore most teams, so they will be the team that everyone is hoping to draw in the next phase.