Champions League Intrigue?
Not often I get a football article sent in, but here is one, so see what you think! For football supporters in the UK, the 2014/15 season has lost a little bit of its intrigue because of Chelsea’s significant advantage in the Premier League tables. What’s ordinarily a time of year to pay close attention to a thrilling EPL title race now appears to be little more than a victory lap for the Blues, although, there is time for a surprise should Chelsea suffer a sudden and unexpected lapse in form, or a crucial injury. At any rate, the real intrigue this year resides in the Champions League, where three of England’s top clubs—Chelsea, Manchester City, and Arsenal—remain alive heading into the round of 16. Here’s a look at where each club stands in Champions League competition. Chelsea Having cruised through Group G to reach the knockout stages, Chelsea looks to be in as good or better form than any club in Europe. However, the Blues will get a difficult test in a round of 16 tie with Ligue 1 champions PSG, whom they narrowly defeated in last year’s quarterfinals. Both clubs are capable of outstanding play, though the interesting factor in this tie could be focus. Chelsea will no doubt be chasing Champions League glory, but with such wonderful domestic opportunity ahead of them, they may be more preoccupied with matches closer to home. Meanwhile, analyst James Eastham’s preview of the tie at betting.betfair’s football news section suggests that PSG may be dealing with distractions of its own. Specifically, Eastham points out that injuries, declining form for superstar Zlatan Ibrahimovic, and supporter criticism of manager Laurent Blanc have all contributed to a “low mood” in the PSG camp. All in all, Chelsea looks to have a strong chance to advance, though it certainly won’t be an easy tie. A win would likely set up a quarterfinal contest against Bayern Munich, who is the favourite against Shakhtar Donetsk in its round of 16 clash. Manchester City […]