The teams Madrid and Barça could meet in the Last 16 of the Champions League
By this evening we will have a clear about which rivals the Spanish teams could face in the Last 16 round of the Champions League. Seven teams have already qualified as champions of their group: Manchester United, PSG, Roma, Barcelona, Manchester City, Besiktas and Tottenham - just one group remains wide open - Group E in which three teams Liverpool, Sevilla and Spartak Moscow all have the chance to end top of the section.
Already in Pot 2 for Monday's draw are Basel, Bayern Munich, Chelsea, Juventus and Real Madrid; the remaining three places will be filled by the teams who finish as runners-up in Group F (Shaktar Donetsk or Napoli),Group G (Porto and Leipzig) and Group E (Liverpool, Sevilla or Spartak Moscow).
Ernesto Valverde's team finish the group stage as leaders in Group D which means they could be drawn against Basel, Bayern Munich or Chelsea in the next round. Barça would be keen to avoid the Germans, who they have looked uncomfortable against in recent meetings. Former azulgrana Thiago Alcántara should be fit to play leg which would add some spice to the tie. Chelsea knocked Barça out in the semi-finals of the 2011/12 edition when Fernando Torres was on the books with the Londoners. Basel would be the most accessible of the three.
Barça could also face any three of the following six teams: Shaktar Donetsk, Napoli, Leipzig, Porto, Liverpool or Spartak Moscow. The Catalans would rather not meet Liverpool at this stage of the tournament, plus there would be the added interest of facing target Philippe Coutinho which might be a tad awkward...
Zinedine Zidane's team know that they won't be among the seeded teams which means they could be handed a theoretically more complicated draw - the least traumatic outcome would be being drawn against Pepe's Besiktas. Another relatively accessible draw would be Spartak Moscow, who first must nudge either Sevilla or Liverpool into the Europa League. Madrid's other possible rivals include Manchester United, PSG, Manchester City and Roma, out of whom the Italians would be the least feared.
As for the other potential outcomes, there would be no shortage of intrigue. Meeting United would be fun if only for the reunion with José Mourinho. The same could be said for Neymar if Madrid draw PSG. City, who brought in Danilo from Madrid over the summer, are one of the teams most would rather avoid at this stage. If Liverpool claim top spot in Group E, another alluring tie would be in store if Klopp's team get drawn against Madrid - no one the famous 4-0 humiliation in 2009 after interim president, Vicente Boluda, declared that Los Blancos would "batter" Benítez's side in what was their first visit to Anfield.
The Andalucians have options: finish as champions of their group, finish second and enter Pot 2 or be eliminated and go into the Europa League. If they knock Liverpool from top spot, they could face Basel, Bayern Munich, Chelsea or Juventus; they could also face the runners-up in Group F - Shaktar or Napoli, or Group G - Porto or Leipzig. Apart from Bayern and Chelsea, Juventus would be the rival Sevilla would least fancy - the southerners still haven't forgotten landing in the group of death with Juve, City and Borussia Mönchengladbach two seasons ago in which they bowed out at the group stage.
Finishing second could throw up a potential nightmare clash in the first knockout round. Manchester United, PSG, Roma, Besiktas, Manchester City and Tottenham would be Sevilla's possible opponents. Even the more favourable option of being drawn against Roma would have extra allure with the chance to face their old Director of Sport, Monchi.
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