Arsenal must overcome holders Bayern Munich if they are to progress in the UEFA Champions League, whilst Manchester City take on Barcelona.
The Gunners were in pole position to finish ahead of their group in the qualifying stages, but a 2-0 defeat to Napoli in Italy left them in second place behind Borussia Dortmund. As a result of this they were in the second pot for the last 16 draw on Monday morning, and they will now have the daunting task of playing Bayern when the competition resumes.
Pep Guardiola’s side won the trophy for a fifth time last season, under Jupp Heynckes, and many pundits feel they have progressed further this time round. However, Arsene Wenger’s men did beat them last term, albeit with a victory which wasn’t enough to see them through on aggregate. And last week, City recorded a memorable 3-2 win in Munich.
One more goal in that victory, in which the Blues came from 2-0 down, would have seen Manuel Pellegrini’s side top the group. Instead, they were also placed in pot two, and they take on Spanish giants Barcelona in the second round. This tie will give Yaya Toure the chance to return to the Camp Nou, where he plied his trade from 2007-2010.
Another player who will be making a return to his former club is Didier Drogba, after his Galatasaray were drawn against Chelsea. Prior to the draw Jose Mourinho revealed that he wanted to face the Turks to allow the Ivorian an emotional return to Stamford Bridge, having left London after his spot-kick won them the Champions League in 2012.
Manchester United, meanwhile, would appear to have the most comfortable passage into the last eight after being paired with Olympiakos. However, David Moyes will be aware that Michel’s side, who edged past Benfica in their group, have been in fine form domestically – of their 15 league games, the Greek giants have won 14 and drawn one, whilst scoring 45 goals and conceding just four times to open up an eight-point lead.
Elsewhere, Milan will take on the in-form Atletico Madrid, whilst Real Madrid have been drawn against Schalke. Bayer Leverkusen will take on Zlatan Ibrahimovic and his Paris St Germain pals, whilst Borussia Dortmund, who were finalists last season, take on Zenit St Petersburg.