Why Real Madrid Are the Only Team Who Can Stop Barcelona in the Champions League
Barcelona's 0-0 tie with Milan today certainly doesn't have them in the drivers seat in the tie. When you consider the head to the Nou Camp, the same place where Milan tied them 2-2 earlier this season, things could get tricky.
Still, you get the feeling that it will be all she wrote for the Italian side, especially if you count in the Zlatan Ibrahimovic factor.
In a two-legged tie, it really is difficult for any team to stop Barcelona. Teams may have a better chance in a one-off game in the final, but things are bound to turn out in the Catalans favour over two legs.
So who could really step up to the plate and beat Barcelona in the Champions League? APOEL, Benfica and Marseille are all virtually out, having lost their home games to better opposition. Chelsea and Bayern Munich are tough but they, as with any side, have their weaknesses.
All of those teams open the door for Real Madrid to play the role of hero. Madrid is the strongest team next to Barcelona, they have Jose Mourinho, they have the best chance to make it to the final and they want revenge.
As it stands, Real Madrid and Bayern Munich will face off in one semifinal while Barcelona should come through to face Chelsea.
Real Madrid has been the next strongest team in Europe and the strongest team in Spain this season. Whereas Barcelona has shown a weakness in away games, Real Madrid has done a solid job both away and at home and sit six points ahead of the Catalans.
Who has the best chance of beating Barcelona in the Champions League?
Both Chelsea and Bayern Munich have shown weakness on the domestic level, and Barcelona will be bound to exploit those things. AC Milan will likely see their weaknesses, age and lack of fortitude, exposed next week.
Chelsea has an experienced squad but they are currently under the guide of an interim manager and that distraction, as well as the liabilities in defense and attack, Monsieur's David Luiz and Fernando Torres chief among them, mean things will not be easy against Barcelona.
Bayern Munich has seen its rough patches on a domestic level this season and a little in the Champions League as well. Their away form is somewhat similar to Barcelona's and they lie five points behind the whippersnappers Borussia Dortmund.
Real Madrid is a level above all these teams and, with Kaka returning to form, they have been very consistent this season.
That is thanks to both the team and Jose Mourinho. After all his failings against Barcelona, Jose Mourinho will have something special in store for the Catalans the next time they meet.
The next time these two meet will be at Nou Camp in La Liga and that may give the viewers an idea of what is to come should these two teams make the final.
Everyone knows how good a tactician Jose Mourinho is and, while it seems he has gone through every possible combination to beat Barcelona, he may have a trick up his sleeve.
The managerial prowess of both Chelsea's Roberto Di Matteo and Munich's Jupp Heynckes will be fully put to the test if or when either team does face Barcelona.
Unfortunately for Jupp Heynckes and Bayern Munich, they may never get that chance to face Barcelona in the final. Real Madrid should be there next opponent and you would have to favour the Spanish giants.
That tie will be interesting when it happens, but Madrid is the stronger team and should come out on top in the end. After that, Madrid should be facing Barcelona in a one off game in the Champions League final.
Whatever happens in the league campaign, Real Madrid will want revenge on the Catalans for every "misdeed" over the last few years. Even if Real Madrid were to win the league, the Champions League would be the cherry on the icing on the top of the cake.
If they were to lose out on La Liga, well, the blood would be boiling as they look to seek their only title of the season against their eternal rivals.
Madrid ticks all the marks as the best possible team to stop the Barcelona freight train in the Champions League. It may seem as if AC Milan and the other competitors really have no chance but that is not the case. Madrid just the best chance.
We'll see what happens to the future of the Blaugrana in the Champions League, and it does begin next Tuesday at the Nou Camp.
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