The eight remaining sides in the UEFA Champions League will discover their quarterfinal opponents at a draw in Nyon, Switzerland, on Friday.
For the first time in this season’s competition there are no restrictions on which teams can meet each other, meaning countries from the same country can faceoff.
That is most likely to occur between the three Spanish clubs of Barcelona, Real Madrid and Malaga as La Liga cements its reputation as the best league around. Germany’s top two clubs, Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund, are also present, representing the Bundesliga strongly.
The rest of the quarterfinal lineup is made up of Galatasaray, who thrillingly dispensed with Schalke in the last round, as well as big-spending Paris Saint-Germain and Italian champions Juventus.
Notable by their absence are any teams from the Premier League. It is the first time since 1996 that there are no representatives from England in the final eight of the competition. With holders Chelsea and Premier League champions Manchester City eliminated in the group phase, Arsenal lost to Bayern Munich and Manchester United to Real Madrid in the round of 16.
Having mounted a sensational comeback to beat Milan with a 4-0 win at Camp Nou, Barcelona are widely perceived to be favorites to claim an incredible their third Champions League crown in five seasons. But both Real Madrid and Bayern Munich will strongly fancy their chances of adding to their gloried European history, while Borussia Dortmund and Juventus will also harbor hopes of going all the way to the final at Wembley on May 25.
The first legs of the quarterfinal matchups will be played on April 8 and 9, with the return matches taking place a week later.
Where to watch: The draw for the quarterfinals of the Champions League will be made at 7 a.m. ET. Coverage will be provided by the Fox Soccer Channel, with a live stream available on Fox Soccer 2Go and free on UEFA.com.
Sports reporter, mainly focusing on my native sport of soccer, but also dabbling in some tennis and Formula One.