Axiom Telecom – UAE is producing a new show for football fans. The show host is Anas Bukhash who was kind enough to extend his invitation to me to be part of the second episode. We played fussball (and I got humiliated) and discussed the first leg of the Champions League Quarter-Finals matches.
Here is the video. Enjoy and tell us what you think – on Twitter – using #KalamfilKora !
UPDATE: Replace Olympiacos with Manchester United below :)
The quarter-final pairings for the Champions League 2013/2014 season are determined by an open draw in which no teams are seeded and clubs from the same national association can be drawn against each other. The side drawn first will play the first leg at home.
The draw ceremony will be held on 21 March 2014 at 11:00 GMT – morning (which translates to 12:00 CET – 15:00 Dubai Time – 13:00 Lebanon Time).
If all goes as per the plan, Borussia Dortmund and Olympiacos will be the last two teams to join Barcelona, Real Madrid, Chelsea, Paris Saint-Zlatan, Bayern Munich, and Atletico Madrid.
My predictions for an explosive quarter finals are:
- Barcelona – Paris Saint-Germain
- Real Madrid – Dortmund
- Chelsea – Bayern Munich
- Olympiacos – Atletico Madrid
The above are based on the hypothesis of revenge, but if we are to take a more insane calculation into consideration, it should be:
- Real Madrid – Paris Saint-Germain
- Chelsea – Atletico Madrid
- Barcelona – Bayern Munich
- Olympiacos – Dortmund
Well, any draw result is possible, and we might see a European El Clasico too!
For the matches, the games will be held on 1,2 and 8,9 April 2014, while the draw for the Semi-Finals will be held on 11 April 2014.
Barcelona vs Manchester City and Bayern Munich vs Arsenal
The draw for the round of 16 for the Champions League resulted in some mouthwatering matches. Here are the details:
- Manchester City(ENG) v FC Barcelona (ESP)
- Olympiacos (GRE) v Manchester United (ENG)
- Milan (ITA) v Atlético Madrid (ESP)
- Bayer Leverkusen (GER) v Paris Saint-Germain (FRA)
- Galatasaray (TUR) v Chelsea (ENG)
- Schalke (GER) v Real Madrid (ESP)
- Zenit (RUS) v Borussia Dortmund (GER)
- Arsenal (ENG) v Bayern Munich (GER)
The matches will be played on 18/19 and 25/26 February and the return matches on 11/12 and 18/19 March.
The draw for the quarter-finals will be held at 12.00CET on 21 March with the semi-final lineup drawn on 11 April, also at 12.00CET. The tournament concludes at Estádio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica on 24 May.
This is straightforward: The draw will be held at 12:00 CET today / 11:00 GMT / 15:00 Dubai Time. It will be on UEFA.com live, or Al Jazeera Sport +10and HD6.
The possibilities are limited for the group winners and here are the only choices:
- Manchester United FC (ENG): Can play Galatasaray, Olympiacos, Schalke, Zenit, Milan
- Real Madrid CF (ESP): Can play Leverkusen, Olympiacos, Manchester City, Schalke, Arsenal, Zenit, Milan
- Paris Saint-Germain (FRA): Can play Leverkusen, Galatasaray, Manchester City, Schalke, Arsenal, Zenit, Milan
- FC Bayern München (GER, holders): Can play Galatasaray, Olympiacos, Arsenal, Zenit, Milan
- Chelsea FC (ENG): Can play Leverkusen, Galatasaray, Olympiacos, Zenit, Milan
- Borussia Dortmund (GER): Can play Galatasaray, Olympiacos, Manchester City, Zenit, Milan
- Club Atlético de Madrid (ESP): Can play Leverkusen, Galatasaray, Olympiacos, Manchester City, Schalke, Arsenal, Milan
- FC Barcelona (ESP): Can play Leverkusen, Galatasaray, Olympiacos, Manchester City, Schalke, Arsenal, Zenit
Forget that 3 out of 4 goals were based on dubious refereeing decisions. FC Barcelona deserved to lose.
Here is my post match review published: Barcelona Ripped Apart by Bayern Munich 0-4
Messi was one man to blame for Barcelona’s loss
There are a lot of rumors about the ability, readiness, and sanity of Lionel Messi’s participation in the second leg game of the Champions League quarter-finals stage against Paris Saint-Germain.
I am not a doctor, but maybe you are an armchair one. He should not play this game even if the medical team gave him the green light or the go-ahead to. The math is simple:
- This is only Paris Saint-Germain
- The away first-leg result is not a bad one
- The team played a magnificent match without him over the weekend
- He never took rest
- An injured player should not be rushed back into action
- Risking Messi’s career is at stake
- One match and one season lost are not as important as a forced early retirement
Barcelona need Messi. Messi cannot stay off the pitch. The world loves seeing him. Yet, I ask the guardian angels of football to insert some logic in Messi’s head and persuade him against playing.
Messi said on his Facebook page: “I will return soon, thankfully it was not so serious.” Let us hope soon is not 10 April, for his own sake.
The draw for the Champions League Quarter-Finals Stage has been concluded. The games will be on 2nd and 3rd, 9th and 10th of April, 2013.
Real Madrid vs Galatasaray
Malaga vs Dortmund
P$G vs Barcelona
Bayern Munich vs Juventus
The Champions League Draw Ceremony will commence at 12:00 CET (11:00 GMT – 15:00 DXB)
Here is one for the Nostradamus-esque lovers: Predictions on who will meet who in the Champions League Quarter-Finals Stage
- Barcelona vs Real Madrid
- PSG vs Juventus
- Galatasaray vs Bayern Muich
- Malaga vs Dortmund
Now, and if the above happened or did not happen, Juventus are Platini’s favorites, and he might already be frustrated from the numbers of El Clasico battles every season.
The Road to Wembley…again!
There are many reviews post the great showing of FC Barcelona against AC Milan.
Here is one by “@BarcaBlogger” on Barca’s Blog:
“It was what the fans wanted and it was what Barcelona wanted – a ticket to… [Continue Reading]”
ATTAAAAAAACK! This is BARCAAAAAAAAAA!
It seems everyone has turned into a ‘Guardiola’ and asking to field in 4 and 5 forwards in Barcelona’s starting lineup to ensure qualification against Milan. This is sad.
There are many other points to consider tactically and no, fielding that much of forwards does not ensure a huge win. Barcelona is not the pathetic team to take desperate measures specifically tailored for one match.
I will not argue with all the fans and explain why that would be stupid. If you want my full tactical insight, you can check my tweets from last night. For the time being, I am trying to make things easier for the viewer and that’s why I created the table below for clarification.
Team to Qualify
|Any Milan Win
|Barcelona 1-0 Milan
|Barcelona 2-0 Milan
|Barcelona 2-1 Milan
|Barcelona 3-0 Milan
|Barcelona 3-1 Milan
|Barcelona 3-2 Milan
|Barcelona 4-1 Milan
|Barcelona 4-2 Milan
In summary, Barcelona need to end the match with a 3 goal margin or more to directly qualify.
Whoever created this photo for the match, is either a genius or an utter fool.