The Malta Independent 17 October 2017, Tuesday

Updated: Madrid and Atletico to meet in Champions League semis

Friday, 21 April 2017, 12:46 Last update: about 7 months ago

Defending champion Real Madrid will meet city rival Atletico Madrid in the semifinals of the Champions League in a rematch of last season's final.

The Spanish teams also met in the 2014 final, with Real winning both times.

The draw on Friday pitted Juventus and Monaco in the other semifinal.

Real and Monaco will play the first legs at home, with one game on May 2 and another on May 3.

The return legs will be the following week.

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The Madrid clubs have faced each other in the last three Champions Leagues. Real also defeated Atletico in the 2015 quarterfinals.

In its seventh straight semifinal, Real is trying to become the first team to repeat as champion since the competition's new format was created in 1992. It won a record-extending 11th title last season.

Atletico is seeking its first title. In addition to the defeats against Real, it also lost to Bayern Munich in the 1974 final.

Two-time champion Juventus is trying to return to the final since losing the final to Barcelona in 2015. That year, it eliminated Monaco in the quarterfinals with a 1-0 aggregate score.

The Italian champion is looking for its first European title since 1996.

Monaco is in the semifinals for the first time since it lost the 2004 final to FC Porto.

The final is in Cardiff on June 3.

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Manchester United will play Celta Vigo and Lyon will take on Ajax in the semifinals of the Europa League.

The draw was made on Friday, with United and Lyon getting home matches in the second legs.

The first legs take place on May 4, with the return legs on May 11.

United is seeking to win Europe's second-tier competition for the first time, which would earn the English team direct entry into next season's Champions League.

Celta Vigo has advanced to a semifinal of a top European club competition for the first time and is bidding to become the eighth Spanish winner of the Europa League or UEFA Cup in the last 12 years.

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