Holders Man City to face Real Madrid in Champions League quarters

Erling Haaland in action for Manchester City. File photo

Holders Manchester City will come up against record 14-time winners Real Madrid in the Champions League quarter-finals after being paired together in Friday’s draw, meaning the sides will meet in a third consecutive season in the competition.

Arsenal will face Harry Kane’s Bayern Munich, while Paris Saint-Germain meet Barcelona and Atletico Madrid will take on Borussia Dortmund in the other ties.

Pep Guardiola’s City will travel to the Spanish capital for the first leg on April 6 or 7, with the return in Manchester a week later.

City beat Madrid in the semi-finals last season on the way to winning the Champions League for the first time, following a 1-1 draw at the Santiago Bernabeu with a stunning 4-0 victory at home in the second leg.

Real came out on top when the teams met in the last four a year earlier, before going on to defeat Liverpool in the final.

The Spanish giants also won a semi-final clash between the teams in 2016, while City emerged victorious in the last 16 in 2020.

The draw threw up a set of mouthwatering ties with Arsenal being rewarded with a tie against German champions Bayern after beating Porto on penalties to qualify for the quarter-finals for the first time since 2010.

The Gunners will host the first leg at the Emirates Stadium, which will see former Tottenham Hotspur talisman Kane — who has so far scored 36 goals in his first season at Bayern — return to London.

There is the prospect of an all-English semi-final, with the winners of the tie between Arsenal and Bayern facing either City or Real in the last four.

PSG’s meeting with Barcelona will be the latest instalment in the rivalry between those sides, as the French club aim to win the Champions League for the first time in their final season before Kylian Mbappe departs when his contract expires in June.

Barcelona knocked PSG out in the quarter-finals in 2013 and 2015, before their spectacular victory in the last 16 in 2017, when they recovered from losing 4-0 away in the first leg with a 6-1 win in the return at the Camp Nou.

PSG avenged that defeat in the last 16 in 2021, when Mbappe scored a hat-trick in the away leg to help his side triumph 5-2 on aggregate.

Atletico will host Dortmund in the first leg of their quarter-final, with the winners of that taking on PSG or Barcelona in the last four.

This season’s Champions League final will take place at Wembley in London on June 1.

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