Over the past week, it had been a running joke that Arsenal would draw Bayern Munich in the UEFA Champions League round of 16.
After Arsenal outlasted PSG to finish top of their group, Arsenal was assured they would draw a team who finished second and theoretically have an easier opponent.
But after Bayern Munich finished second to Atletico Madrid in their group, everyone knew better and assumed Arsenal would play Bayern Munich and likely continue their long suffering streak of losing in the round of 16. After facing Arsenal in the round of 16 in 2013 and 2014, Bayern’s Twitter account also assumed they would face the English powerhouse.
Well, ask and ye shall receive because that was exactly what happened. Bayern Munich was drawn to face Arsenal in the Champions League round of 16. Arsenal is under lots of pressure to defeat the German champs. Even though Arsenal has qualified for the Champions League every year since 1998, they have never won and lately have been knocked out in the round of 16 in every year since 2010.
There are some other intriguing matchups in the round of 16. One includes Leicester City facing Sevilla. Of all the group stage winners, the surprise English champs were probably the team all the other second place teams wanted to face. But after destroying Manchester City 4-2 this past weekend, Sevilla may be in for a fight.
If Leicester City was the first place team everyone wanted to play against, Real Madrid was the second place team all the group stage winners wanted to avoid. Even though Real didn’t lose a game in the group stage and are currently on a 35 game unbeaten streak, the La Liga leaders finished second in their group to Borussia Dortmund. Unfortunately for Napoli, they were the unlucky ones who drew Real Madrid in the round of 16.
Other matchups include PSG vs. Barcelona, Manchester City vs. Monaco, Benfica vs. Borussia Dortmund, Porto vs. Juventus and Bayer Leverkusen vs. Atletico Madrid.