A duel of English clubs, Liverpool and Manchester City, which promises to be rich in goals, an Italian club, AS Roma, facing the Barcelona mountain: the last two quarter-final first leg of the Champions League Wednesday (20:45 ) are as enticing as those of Tuesday.
Twelve goals scored in two matches: Manchester City had skimmed Liverpool in the Premier League in the first leg (5-0), the Reds have taken revenge by inflicting the Citizens their only defeat of the season in the league (4-3). And it is now the Champions League that will decide between their flamboyant coaches, Spaniard Pep Guardiola against the German Jurgen Klopp.
City, which could be crowned early this weekend in the English league, a priori share favorite given his domestic results. The men of Pep Guardiola do not count anything less than 16 points ahead of their first pursuer, Manchester United, they face Saturday.
The Mancunian club is also the latest Englishman to reach the semi-finals of the Champions League in 2015-16. Then trained by the Argentine Manuel Pellegrini, he was eliminated by the future winner, Real Madrid.
Liverpool, however, has some arguments to make, including the weight of history: the Reds won 5 Champions League, the last in 2005 after an epic final that saw them go up 3 goals against the AC Milan.
Jurgen Klopp can also count on his fire attack, led by the untenable Egyptian Mohamed Salah. But from this point of view, Pep Guardiola also has talent at his disposal with his staff to 878 million euros, the most expensive in history according to the calculations of the CIES football observatory.
The other match is also tantalizing: FC Barcelona is a contender for the final victory and flies over its national championship this season, despite the presence of cadets Atletico Madrid and Real Madrid. And if it does not favor the forecasts, the AS Roma remains a major Italian club.
It remains to be seen whether he can compete with Barcelona in his intimidating Camp Nou. “When we talk with fans, people around the club, we understand that a team like Roma must win titles again,” said the former Lyonnais Maxime Gonalons, interviewed by AFP before the meeting.
He quoted Bosnian striker Edin Dzeko and Brazilian goalkeeper Alisson as major assets of his team against Barça … While waiting for the support of the Roman public during the return home game.