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Champions League Draw sets up dream reunions


Jose Mourinho will be returning to Stamford Bridge while David Beckham heads back to Old Trafford after the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 draw provided a set of dream match-ups.

Mourinho and Inter Milan will face Chelsea is the marquee match-up of the round, while Beckham got his wish  after claiming he hoped AC Milan would face Manchester United.

Here are all eight Round of 16 match-ups:

Inter Milan vs. Chelsea

AC Milan vs. Manchester United

Lyon vs. Real Madrid

Bayern Munich vs. Fiorentina

Stuttgart vs. FC Barcelona

Olympiakos vs. Bordeaux

FC Porto vs. Arsenal

CSKA Moscow vs. Sevilla

The Round of 16 will take place in February and March.

What do you think of the match-ups? Which match will you be looking forward to the most? Looking forward to seeing Beckham return to Old Trafford and Mourinho returning to Stamford Bridge?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. Calm down, guy. My comment was admittedly based on “speculation and paranoia.” I don’t believe in the unbiased fairness of our sporting bodies. They are businesses. Of course there is no proof of it being a “conspiracy.” My comment was just based on the observation of the matchups and intended to contribute to discussion, and sorry if somehow you think it’s dirtying the good name of football everywhere.

    To address your main points, first of all, I think Beckham back to OT is a bigger story than CR would be, especially considering the fact that (as you point out) he will end up there again in the future (if not later in CL, ha-ha, which Beckham’s Milan has little chance of doing). Why not hope for a Real v Man U matchup later? I’d like to see it.
    Secondly, the media seems to care quite a bit about “the special one” and whatever he does. Personally, I don’t care for Chelsea or Inter or really know a thing about Mourinho, anyway. That matchup is probably one of the least enticing to me. Either way, it is a big story.

    Again, sorry if I offended, but it’s all in the spirit of discussion.

  2. Little silly. What about Ronaldinho back to Barca? What about Henry back to Arsenal? Or Becks back to Real Madrid? Or Ronaldo back to Porto? Or Dani Alves back to Sevilla? None of those enticing matchups happened. There will always be these possibilities as long as top players switch amongst top teams.

  3. personal dislike + escalating boredom does not = conspiracy.

    And, I think there is a good chance C. Ronaldo is heading back to Old Trafford, if not this tournament, in another tournament in the coming years. That’s because Real Madrid and Manchester United are soccer institutions that will be involved in the Champions League year after year. It is bound to happen eventually, and someone will say, “WAIT! It’s a conspiracy!”

    It’s not. It’s a statistical probability. Offer ONE SINGLE piece of evidence, beyond speculation or your interpretation of “coincidence”, that suggests that this is some kind of conspiracy.

  4. I’m sorry that I upset some of my fellow posters with my own dislike and escalating boredom of these matches annually but I can’t shake the fact that, yes, some posters do see a bit of light: Becks going back to OT and Mourinho facing Chelsea…what a nice coincidence for UEFA and TV.

    Plus, you really think C. Ronaldo won’t be heading back to OT, say, next year or the year after?

    It’s the same B.S. to me but I am not saying that I won’t watch these matches. It’s just too predictable and I do realize that it’s the same top teams every time—no parity.

    That’s why I personally am taking a liking to our new CONCACAF CL because of the parity. Hell, the South America tournaments are much more exciting.

  5. The best matches should be ManU-AC Milan. Bekcham will be the main story, but the real importance of these matches aside from the result will be how well Ronaldinho (and to a lesser extent, Pato) plays. Ronny has been inching closer to his best form, and he probably needs a high profile show to return him from his Dunga imposed exile. No better stage than this matchup.

  6. That’s ridiculous. First, if it was rigged, why not pit Real Madrid against Man U? (Cristiano Ronaldo returning home).

    Second, I doubt that anyone that KNOWS soccer (and you can infer whatever you want from that statement) gives a lick about an old manager returning to the club he previously managed. Players–not managers–win games. Would you be saying the same thing if Inter was matched with Porto (Mourinho’s former team)? Nope.

    The fact is, at this level, players and coaches move around in the same circles. It is a coincidence, but a predictable one given the relationships among these teams.

    Finally, if your conspiracy theory held true, wouldn’t UEFA prefer that these high-level match-ups occur later in the tourney? I mean, if I was a conspirator, I would pit Inter and Chelsea and Man U and Milan against Porto, CSKA Moscow, Stuttgart, and maybe Lyon. Then, I would create those sexy match-ups in the quarterfinals and semifinals.

    Take your conspiracy theories elsewhere. They are based on rank speculation and paranoia.

  7. I don’t know how modern American sports fans could see the draw as anything but rigged. Of course they are “the best teams in the world,” it’s CL. But the fact that Beckham will return to Old Trafford for the first time since his exit and Mourinho will face his old squad basically writes the headlines and keeps the eyes glued to the old TV already. Don’t forget the size of the business that is football in Europe. Too, too fortuitous.
    However, it aint going to stop me from enjoying these great matchups. Personally, Arsenal v Porto and Lyon v Real pique my interest most.
    As for Europa league, really looking forward to Juve v Ajax and Fulham v Shakhtar.

  8. Chelsea and Inter will be a snore-fest. Remember how great Inter-Barca was going to be? Anytime these big teams come up against each other you are in for some boring ass games.

    These are the matches to watch in my opinion. I am so over the Champions League – same sh*t different year. The Europa League is where the fun will begin.

    FC Porto vs. Arsenal
    CSKA Moscow vs. Sevilla

  9. Saw that, also saw there are rumors (however unsubstantiated) that Everton could make a push for Fernando Gago.

    Not exactly a surefire thing, but wouldn’t help in getting LanDo playing time.

    Aaron they don’t play the same positions at all. Gago is more of a d-mid, were landon is purely an attacking player.

  10. Just to play devil’s advocate, they have them play now because there is in fact no guarantee that they would make it to the next round.

    If you want them to pay each other, you make them play now. Why wait? Would Inter v Chelsea really be a bigger deal in the round of 8 than round of 16? I don’t think it would. Same with Man U v AC Milan. What difference does it make which round they play in as long as Beckham goes back to Old Trafford?

  11. Neither Sevilla nor CSKA have ever been to quarters. I really think Sevilla can go far this year, like Villareal a few years back.

  12. Wwll i was hoping Chelsea would get someone a little easier this soon in the competetion, but i guess it is aboutt time they draw someone tough outside of the quarters and semis. Chelsea will go through on away goals in this one.

  13. Um…just the fact that the best teams in the world make it this far makes the probability for these “dream match-ups” very high indeed. not that hard to figure out…

  14. I know this is supposed to be a “blind” draw but don’t tell UEFA didn’t somehow rig this draw to get the matchups they wanted. It seems like every year there are “dream” matchups every year. Please tell me I’m wrong and there is still some integrity still in sports.

  15. Munich and Fiorentina had an awesome home and home series in the UEFA Cup two years ago. The finale saw two late equalizers in extra time for Munich to advance. It is one of my favorite games of all time.

  16. Rigged? If they were trying to rig it, why would they hook up four of the big 6 to play each other in the Round of 16? They’d want the marquee teams to go as deep into the tournament as possible….

  17. Aw man, terrible draw for my Stuttgart. I was hoping for Bordeaux, Fiorentina or ManU.

    Wouldn’t that be some crazy stuff if we upset Barca? Haha, I know it’s like a 1% chance, but that’d be fun.

  18. what makes you think it is rigged? please explain more

    it is similar every year because these are best teams and with only 16 left the best are very likely to play each other. since inter and ac milan were both 2nd place they were going to play one of the group winners.

    if it didn’t happen in this round it would happen in the next, so it don’t really matter

    ??? not high

  19. Great draw for Sevilla! I’m not sure how far they’ve gone in Champions League before, but this certainly sets them up for an unusually long run in the competition.

  20. Can’t wait. Those are the two games I really want to see. “Cough Cough”. What’s that? I feel a cold coming on. I may have to call in sick! : )

  21. That’s why I don’t even get excited over CL any more. It’s the same crap every year and if you think this ain’t rigged, you’re smoking good stuff.

  22. Barca with the gifted draw, when most needed. I think ManYoo wins this one pending a healthier D. Real Madrid should be thru to the next round. And Inter isn’t as tough as Chelsea, but we’ve seen it before, old coach leads new team to win vs old team. Mourinho is going to be beyond pumped to win this one!

  23. I know most are looking at the Man U v AC and Chelski v Inter matches as good ones…and they are….but I think the most viewer friendly match up is Bayern v Fiorentina. That should be a fire cracker of a series.

    Stuttgart is in a world of hurt now. I am also hoping for Lyon to take out “the shopaholics” I mean Real Madrid. Seriously…if Real do not win it all with this team…where do they go for new players next, outer space? Will they just buy the world cup winning team?


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