After the dust of the European Super League has been settled, it’s time for us to get back to our good old Champions League. The quarter-finals are over and the outcomes were pretty much the same as we predicted in our previous article. Both legs were thrilling and all the teams gave their best to secure their spots in the Champions League semi-finals 2020-21. Although, it was these four teams that were hailed victorious after everything was said and done: Real Madrid, Paris Saint Germain, Manchester City & Chelsea.
Here’s a quick overview of what went down in the quarter-finals,
1. Real Madrid vs Liverpool: Aggregate 3:1 (RM won). First Leg – (RM 3 – LIV 1). Second Leg – (LIV 0 – RM 0)
2. Manchester City vs Dortmund: Aggregate 4:2 (Man City won) First Leg – (MCI 2 – DOR 1), Second Leg – (DOR 1 – MCI 2)
3. Bayern Munich vs Paris Saint Germain: Aggregate 3:3 (PSG won on away goals). First Leg – (BAY 2 – PSG 3), Second Leg – (PSG 0 – BAY 1)
4. FC Porto vs Chelsea: Aggregate 1:2 (CHE won). First Leg – (POR 0 – CHE 2), Second Leg – (CHE 0 – POR 1)
For the first time in five years, Manchester City is headed to the UEFA Champions League semi finals. They will be taking on Mauricio Pochettino’s Paris Saint Germain on April 28th who are hell-bent on reversing last year’s failure. On the other hand, the record holders of Champions League trophies, Real Madrid will be facing off against the English giants, Chelsea who are only getting better each day after Thomas Tuchel took over the management.
So, is the history going to repeat to itself as Los Blancos add another trophy to their cabinet? Or will history prefer the English side and let them accomplish the wonder of 2012 once again? Or maybe, it will be a new chapter in the history book of the Champions League, if Pep Guardiola or Pochettino lead their boys to glory! Anything can happen but today, we are going to assess and predict the outcomes of the Champions League semi-finals 2020-21. Let’s begin!
Semi-Final 1: Real Madrid vs. Chelsea
The first clash of the Champions League semi-finals will be against two of the elite clubs that were the founding members of the now disbanded European Super League. After the rumours about UEFA ruling out both the teams from the competition were put to rest, everything is now back on track. However, things aren’t looking so great for Real Madrid. The Los Blancos captain, Sergio Ramos and one of their key player, Lucas Vazquez would definitely miss the European clash next week. Add Valverde to the list as well. Zinedine Zidane will have a lot to manage and cover for if he wants to face a highly in-form Chelsea.
The English side has been absolutely great since Thomas Tuchel took over from Lampard. However, Tuchel will have to form a strategy to take down Los Blancos without Mateo Kovacic who has been a consistent one in the squad. With this young team with so much potential and the combined attack from Mason Mount and Kai Havertz can really turn the tables down on The Whites. Even if Luka Modric & Toni Kroos are available for the game, the absence of the skipper will be heavily felt. With sheer talent alone, Thomas Tuchel’s side can definitely take on Real Madrid, mostly due to the current condition of the Spanish side. Nonetheless, Eden Hazard would be more than willing to take on his former club.
For Zidane, key player once again would be Vinicius Junior and the same old reliable man, Karim Benzema. As for the English side, it’s Thomas Tuchel himself and his new tactics with the team which has done great so far. So, from the current scenario, we can conclude that the first leg would be conquered by Chelsea. However, the return of Sergio Romas in the second leg might change the scenario completely.
MY PREDICTIONS: Chelsea wins the first leg. However, Real Madrid comes back stronger in the second game and win with a good strategy.
TIME & VENUE: The first-leg will take place on 28th April, 12:30 am (IST), at the Parc des Princes in Paris, France. The second one will then take place at the Etihad Stadium and it’s scheduled for 4th May at the same time.
Semi-Final 2: Paris Saint Germain vs. Manchester City
Manchester City has the most consistent track in this year’s Champion League so far. They scored 2 goals each in both legs against Borussia Dortmund. However, the French giants, Paris Saint Germain are the most formidable side of the tournament, thanks to the destructive duo of Neymar and Mbappe. Not to mention the classy Di Maria. It will be a memorable clash which football fans can cherish for years.
Now, coming to the analysis, the previous encounter between these two sides resulted in Guardiola having the last laugh. Man City defeated PSG 1-0 with Kevin De Bruyne’s 76th minute masterclass shot and they advanced to the semi-finals with 3-2 aggregate. The clash was epic and both sides were almost at the same level. We can expect the same this time as well. Kevin De Bruyne remains their creator-in-chief as he is in excellent form. The assistance from Sergio Agüero and Sterling will be much required as well.
As for the Pochettino boys, they have presented one of the finest performances against last year’s champion, Bayern Munich. The attacking power of this team has the potential to break through Pep Guardiola’s impenetrable barrier. As the Spanish coach said, “If we don’t win, I will be a failure. If we win, it will be ‘Oh, how good is Pep.’” As much as we all would love to see Guardiola achieving his 3rd glory, the chances are slightly higher for the French side. Then again, you can never tell with that man!
MY PREDICTION: Paris Saint Germain wins.
TIME & VENUE: The first-leg will take place on 28th April, 12:30 am (IST) at the Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano in Madrid, Spain. The second one will then take place at the Stamford Bridge stadium and it’s scheduled for 6th May at the same time.