PSG, Manchester City, FC Barcelona, Juventus, Napoli and FC Bayern Munich are yet to lose a game so far in the tournament.
With the knockout phase fast approaching, teams across Europe will want to secure the knockout spot in the Round of 16 of this prestigious competition going into Match Day 5 of this season’s UEFA Champions League.
Let’s have a look at the important nail-biting matches which are scheduled for this round.
1. Real Madrid vs Paris Saint-Germain
Successive victories have revived Real Madrid’s UEFA Champions League challenge and they will now be looking to turn the tables on already-qualified Paris Saint-Germain, who subjected them to a heavy loss on Matchday one and will clinch first place in Group A if they avoid defeat at the Santiago Bernabéu.
Madrid took only one point from their first two Group A games but two contrasting victories against Galatasaray on Matchdays three and four have given them a five-point advantage over third-placed Club Brugge.
2. Juventus vs Atletico Madrid
While Juventus have ten points, Atlético are at seven points in second place and four points ahead of both Lokomotiv Moskva and Bayer Leverkusen. Juventus will be hoping to maintain their last season’s dominant home success and will be confirmed in first place if they beat Atletico, although a defeat would open the door for second-placed Atletico ahead of the final set of fixtures.
A troublesome knee problem has harmed Ronaldo in recent weeks but Gonzalo Higuain and Paulo Dybala were both on the scoresheet in what was a very impressive 3-1 win for the Italian champions this weekend. On the other hand, Atletico Madrid lead the head-to-head record against Juventus and will look to capitalize on Ronaldo’s absence from this match.
3. Valencia CF vs Chelsea FC
Frank Lampard’s side suffered a surprise 1-0 defeat to the Spanish side on Match Day one but recovered to win their next two away games against Lille and Ajax to steady their UEFA Champions League ship.
This Wednesday will see Valencia host Chelsea in the return leg and there’s no doubt that this one will be pivotal for both sides in terms of their chances of making the knockout stages. The winners here will be favourites to progress into the Round of 16 while the losers will probably have to rely on a slip-up by Ajax to make it through.
Chelsea have an impressive record against the Spanish side but it will be difficult to take all three points from the Mestalla this season. The group is evenly poised with Ajax, Chelsea and Valencia all at seven points and equally motivated to grab the spot in the next round of UEFA Champions League
4. FC Barcelona vs Borussia Dortmund
Group F leaders Barcelona were held to a frustrating draw away at Dortmund on Match Day one. In a tough Group F, Ernesto Valverde’s side have dropped points to both Slavia Prague and Dortmund, but a win over struggling Dortmund will see them advance out of the group stage for the 19th consecutive season.
A loss for Dortmund will see them needing to beat Slavia Prague and also hope that Barcelona do them a favor against Inter Milan in the final matchday.
5. Liverpool FC vs Napoli SSC
The reigning European champions currently hold a one-point lead at the summit of Group E after back-to-back victories over Belgian outfit Genk. Liverpool can confirm their qualification for the first knockout round if they beat Napoli or Red Bull Salzburg fail to beat Genk.
Liverpool may enter this match as favorites but Napoli have every reason to believe they can get the result they need to advance and even top the group. The Partenopei are unbeaten in Europe this season but looked vulnerable on couple of occasions against Red Bull Salzburg and Genk.
Neutral fans could be in for a spectacular outing between two in-form teams with plenty of attacking firepower at the display.
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