Champions League Draw: Bayern v Inter, Schalke v Valencia
Bayern Munich v Inter
Last season’s finalists, Bayern Munich and Inter, will meet once more in this season’s edition of the Champions League, but this time in the round of sixteen. Inter have looked a much weaker side since Jose Mourinho’s departure in the summer, and Bayern Munich should be able to take full advantage of that. A passage into the quarter-finals looks quite clear, and Louis van Gaal’s men will be delighted that another run to the final is still possible.
Schalke v Valencia
Schalke couldn’t have drawn an easier opponent in my opinion. Valencia are a good side, but Schalke will be too much for them. If Magath’s men can dominate the midfield and shut out Ever Banega, then they’ll have the run of the match in both legs. Juan Mata and Pablo Hernandez are key down the flanks for Valencia, but Schalke have been disciplined in defense lately and they should be able to hold them. Raul Gonzalez will return to Spain and face a familiar foe, and I expect him to really turn up in this leg. It’s great to see that both of the Bundesliga’s Champions League representatives have a clear shot at the quarter-finals.
Elsewhere, Arsenal drew Barcelona, Chelsea drew Copenhagen, Manchester United drew Marseille, Tottenham drew AC Milan, Roma drew Shakhtar Donetsk and Real Madrid drew Olympique Lyon. It should be a fantastic round.