Competition Focus

FC Barcelona Wants To Avoid This Potential Champions League Opponent

There is one team in particular that the FC Barcelona locker room wants to avoid being drawn against in the Champions League quarter-finals according to Mundo Deportivo, which cited anonymous sources.

Barca has successfully reached the elite European competition’s last eight for the first time since 2020 after seeing off Napoli at the Montjuic Stadium this week.

This was done via a 3-1 win in the last 16 second leg, which contributed to a 4-2 aggregate score over the Italian Serie A holders.

Attention now turns to the draw on Friday, where Barca could meet the likes of bitter rivals Real Madrid, their crosstown foes Atletico Madrid, Arsenal, Borussia Dortmund, Paris Saint-Germain, Bayern Munich or Manchester City.

According to Mundo Deportivo, however, there is one team out of that pack that the Catalan locker room would like to avoid.

Surprisingly it isn’t German kings Bayern, who administered Barca their last defeat at this stage in the competition back in 2020, which was the 8-2 humbling in Lisbon widely regarded as their darkest night on the continent, while also knocking them out of the group stage in the previous two editions of the UCL.

Instead, the opponent “that very few are willing to face” is reigning champions Manchester City, with the main reason for this “obvious”.

Mundo Deportivo points to the “quality of the squad that, led by a fantastic coach [Pep Guardiola], won the last edition of the Champions League” while also boasting ammunition “so powerful” that if the Mancunians can be avoided for now then “so much the better”.

There is no information on who Barca would like to be pitted against when the draw is made at midday in mainland Europe on Friday. Though, with all due respect, Arsenal – despite currently topping the Premier
League – and Borussia Dortmund might be considered less daunting tasks than the other outfits that remain in the pot.

Perhaps the Blaugrana wants to face fellow La Liga side Atletico Madrid, with around $68.3 million (€62.5 million) on the line in that tie in particular.

This can be broken down into $13.7 million (€12.5 million) for whoever wins and advances to the semi-finals as per UEFA figures, but also $54.6 million (€50 million) for the last vacant Spanish spot in FIFA’s Club World Cup next year where that latter fee will be paid to participants according to Mundo Deportivo.

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