The second lot of Champions League last 16 ties take place over the next two nights. Here are the crucial matches happening on Tuesday and Wednesday night:
Manchester City v Schalke (Tuesday, Kick-off 8 PM)
On Tuesday night, Manchester City host Bundesliga strugglers Schalke at the Etihad Stadium, having won the first leg of the tie 3-2 in Gelsenkirchen.
City have hit form of late, winning eight of their last nine matches in 90 minutes in all competitions. The Citizens recent record in the Champions League is also a good one, as Pep Guardiola’s side are unbeaten in six outings, having recorded five victories. The home side have also been prolific in Europe’s elite competition, scoring at least two goals in their last six outings.
City have won their last two home matches in the Champions League, having previously suffered three successive home defeats in the competition. Their home games in Europe are usually entertaining, with over 2.5 goals scored in six of their last seven outings at the Etihad Stadium.
Schalke are experiencing a difficult domestic campaign. In fact, they are in a fight for survival in the Bundesliga. Domenico Tedesco’s side heads into this clash on the back of a five-game winless run, including losing their last four competitive games.
The visitors have an inconsistent recent record in the Champions League, having won just four of their last nine games in Europe’s elite competition. Their recent matches in the Champions League have been relatively tight affairs, with under 2.5 goals scored in five of their last seven games.
Schalke have endured mixed fortunes on their travels in the Champions League of late. However, a record of three wins in ten away matches is not a great one for the German side. Manchester City hold a clear advantage in this tie and are red hot favourites to progress beyond Tuesday’s opponents.
Bayern Munich v Liverpool (Wednesday, kick-off 8 PM)
On Wednesday night, Bayern Munich host Premier League Liverpool at the Allianz Arena. The tie is delicately balanced after a goalless draw in the first leg at Anfield.
Bayern Munich have hit hot form of late, having regained the lead in the Bundesliga in the process. The Bavarians are also eight games unbeaten in the Champions League, although four of those matches were drawn, including the first leg of this tie. Bayern’s recent European games have been relatively low scoring, with under 2.5 goals scored in five of their last seven matches.
The reigning German champions are difficult to beat at the Allianz Arena. In fact, only Real Madrid have beaten Bayern on home soil in the Champions League since 2013.
Liverpool’s recent form has been inconsistent, with a cluster of draws hampering their bid for the Premier League title. The Reds head to Munich on the back of just three wins in their last eight matches in all competitions. The visitors recent Champions League record does not make good reading either, as Jurgen Klopp’s side has won just two of their last six away games in Europe’s elite competition.
Liverpool recent away record in the Champions League is a poor one, as the team from Merseyside have lost their last four European matches on their travels. Their last away win in the Champions League came nearly at year ago at Manchester City.
Bayern look to be favourites to head through to the last eight. However, as Liverpool have proven in recent seasons, they can spring surprises in Europe.
This weeks other Champions League matches
Juventus v Atletico Madrid (Tuesday, kick-off 8 PM)
Barcelona v Lyon Wednesday (Wednesday, kick-off 8 PM)
Who will make it through to the last eight of the Champions League?