The 2019/2020 football season across Europe has mostly been concluded but we still have the advanced stages of this year’s Champions League tournament to look forward to.
Some juicy clashes are coming up and today I will be focusing on the two remaining Premier League clubs.
Manchester City and Chelsea are the only English clubs left in the competition after holders Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur were booted out in the last round by Atletico Madrid and RB Leipzig respectively.
The first legs of the upcoming quarter-finals have already been played and we will know the fate of the remaining two English contenders before the end of the week.
Let’s see what they are up against and whether an English team can win the Champions League again this year.
Blues fans’ are probably carrying very mixed feelings regarding their season so far.
The team managed to hold on to the 4th spot in the EPL and book a place in the Champions League for next season but their form since Project Restart began has not been encouraging.
Lampard started his tenure at Stamford Bridge brilliantly but injuries and the inexperience of his young core eventually caught up with him.
Thankfully for the club, Leicester was a complete shambles in the closing stages of the Premier League, otherwise, it wouldn’t have been possible for Chelsea to finish in the Top 4.
After losing the FA Cup final to Arsenal, the only thing left for the Blues is to rely on their very slim chances of overturning a 3:0 deficit from the first leg against Bayern Munich.
The German champions completely destroyed Lampard’s team in a match that showed that the London outfit still has a long way to go if they are to consistently challenge the European elite.
Olivier Giroud Mason Mount’s form has been very positive as of late and it’s true that the French striker has found a way to score against Bayern multiple times in the past but progressing from here looks like mission impossible for Lampard and his players.
Their fragile defense will be easily exploited and although I do expect the visitors to score one or two goals, I just can’t see them pull off such a major miracle at the Allianz Arena even if there would be no Bayern fans there to spur on the home team.
Manchester City lost the Premier League title to Liverpool and they were knocked out by Arsenal in the FA Cup semi-final, so the big news surrounding them these days was the capture of Valencia starlet Ferran Torres.
City fans are right to be excited about the player but we will have to wait until next season to see him play at the Etihad and the focus is completely on their upcoming tie with Real Madrid.
Unlike Chelsea, City did the hard job in the first leg by beating the Spanish giants 2:1 in their own ground.
This gives them a huge chance to progress to the semi-finals as Real Madrid have never qualified after accumulating a first-leg deficit at Santiago Bernabeu.
On top of that, Guardiola has been successful in eliminating them in the past and key players Kevin De Bruyne, Sergio Aguero, and David Silva will be pumped up for the match as this year may well be their last realistic chance of putting their hands on the most coveted club football trophy.
Manchester City has gradually become more experienced in the tournament and they have both the quality and depth to challenge the likes of Barcelona, Juventus, and Bayern Munich should they wrap up the tie with Real Madrid on Friday.
Having no spectators during matches can also be an advantage as City fans are not exactly known for their vocal support.
Whereas the other big teams have a following that can make every away match a living hell for the visitors.
There is still a lot of work ahead but getting things done against Madrid and a favorable draw in the semi-finals can go a long way here.
The club will be relieved that their Champions League ban was lifted, the Premier League season is in the past and they can fully focus on the job at hand.
Conclusion and Final Words
Chelsea definitely has a mountain to climb but I really do feel that City has a chance to take the trophy this year.
It looks like all the conditions favor them and they will be much harder to eliminate than in previous editions.
Both Pep Guardiola and his players have been waiting for a CL triumph for a long time and if anything catastrophic doesn’t happen, I can easily see Man City making it to the final.
Another winner from the Premier League will be a big statement after more than a decade of Spanish and German domination over the trophy.
In any case, I’m excited to have the Champions League back and hope that we’re in for an entertaining business end to the competition.