The Malta Independent 27 March 2017, Monday

Real Madrid against Bayern, Juve to face Barcelona; Man Utd to meet Anderlecht in Europa League

Friday, 17 March 2017, 12:18 Last update: about 9 days ago

Defending champion Real Madrid will play Bayern Munich in the Champions League quarterfinals, sending Bayern coach Carlo Ancelotti to face the team he won the trophy with three years ago.

Madrid and Bayern, which first play in Munich, have combined to win 16 European titles. One club, however, will end its recent streak of reaching the semifinals for at least five straight years.

Also in Friday's draw, Barcelona will meet Juventus in a rematch of the 2015 final, Champions League newcomer Leicester will face Atletico Madrid, and Borussia Dortmund will take on Monaco.

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The first legs will be played on April 11-12, with the return matches on April 18-19.

Ancelotti is aiming to be the first coach to lead three different clubs to the European title. Besides Madrid, he also coached AC Milan to two Champions League titles.

"It could be a final but it's a quarterfinal, unfortunately," said Madrid director Emilio Butragueno, noting that his club's players know Ancelotti's style.

Barcelona won its fifth European title two years, beating Juventus 3-1 in Berlin. That loss meant the Italian champions set a competition record of losing six finals.

Leicester, which is making its debut in the tournament, is the only team in the draw which has never played in a Champions League final. But Leicester and Atletico have played before. The Spanish club eliminated Leicester in the first round of the UEFA Cup in 1997.

"We know very well the problem Sevilla had with Leicester," Atletico director Clemente Villaverde said.

Monaco has become a feared team, and the highest scoring team in any top European league this season, after starting among the lowest-ranked clubs in the group-stage draw in August.

Neither Monaco coach Leonardo Jardim nor Dortmund coach Thomas Tuchel has ever led a team to the Champions League semifinals.

The final is scheduled for June 3 in Cardiff, Wales.

Man United to face Anderlecht in Europa League quarterfinals 

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Manchester United has been paired with Anderlecht in the Europa League quarterfinals.

United, which has never won the competition, will travel to Belgium on April 13 for the first leg against the 1983 UEFA Cup champions. The return match in Manchester will be on April 20.

Also Friday, Ajax was drawn to host Schalke first in a pairing of the two other former winners, while Lyon will meet Besiktas and Celta Vigo was drawn against Genk.

The final is scheduled for May 24 in Stockholm, Sweden. The winner will earn a Champions League place next season.

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