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City Present Madrid’s Best Chance Of Undecima

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By Ridwan Adeola Yusuf

Friday’s draw in Nyon, Switzerland of the glamorous UEFA Champions League handed the most successful football clubside in European cup, Real Madrid CF of Spain their brightest opportunity to further extend superiority in the history of the competition.

Cristiano Ronaldo had been expecting his Portuguese counterparts, Benfica. Also, Pep Guardiola had somewhat been looking forward to knocking Cristiano and et al out in his last season in charge of the Bavarians.

Now, the ‘City could have been ‘happier’ had they gotten an Atletico (and avoided Bayern and Madrid). On his own, Simeone would have preferred another of their Spanish rivals in Real; same with Barca faithful. But that is the spectacle the competition begets. It could swing anyway; not only the draw but the double-header games too.

Still, the anticipated final would be Real Madrid-Bayern Munich. That is understandable. Davor Suker’s prediction is gradually coming to past. He forecast a Madrid-Barca/Bayern ‘finale’. That is by the way though.

Even if from the outset, Real were not amongst the favorites, now they are. This is so, because, there is no more Barcelona. Bayern on the other hand, were genuine contenders right from Day-One. Los Blancos had to wait 12 years to win La Decima, but now, La Undecima is closer than ever.

Within the space of three years, they could win their second Europe premier club competition crown. Pep’s Bayern perhaps remain their biggest obstacle. But we might recall two years ago that they won the cup; they easily cruised past the German side.

Real Madrid face the ‘guest club’, in Manchester City in the last four. Over two legs, they are expected to sail through. This current City side is not reliable. Yes, they should be given the deserving credit for topping their ‘group of death’ and ousting the fanciful PSG.

Their adventure this season (in Europe) has been a remarkable feat. Therefore, they should go out there come the latter part of this month and enjoy their game. Expect no upset though! The entire Real Madrid squad could have been dealt a psychological blow even without kicking a ball had they been ‘given’ Atletico Madrid.

Over the past few years, the defence-minded Atletico always pose a serious problem to Real. They do not even like playing them.

In contrast, Simeone’s boys ‘love’ the derby nowadays! So, for Madrid, thank God it is a Manchester outfit!

Ridwan, writes from Lagos; E-Mail: ridwanadeola@gmail.com

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