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I know it's not tough for me to say that FC Barcelona will win the 2012-13 UEFA Champions League title, but I'm not just saying this as a Culé—I'm saying it as a follower of all football leagues in Europe, as well as evaluating the competition Barcelona could potentially face.
Here's my take:
Like I previously said, the two teams I could see giving Barcelona a tough time are Juventus and Bayern Munich.
Juve because of their defense and their Chelsea-like potential.
Bayern Munich because they are a strong team overall.
I don't see Barcelona running into Real Madrid. I believe Madrid will be out of the Champions League by at least the semifinals—if not already eliminated by Manchester United in the Round of 16—as Jose Mourinho's team is struggling in all tournaments (Liga, Copa, and CL) as well as facing internal problems.
Manchester United can always be down the road, but United's style of play is not a real threat to Barça.
I'm not going to lie: I'm glad Chelsea is out of the CL. Not just because I despise them, but because they have given Barcelona problems in the past (2009 and 2012).
A wildcard may be Borussia Dortmund.
Arsenal, Paris Saint-Germain and the rest of the clubs left do not worry me. And if you're a Culé, they shouldn't worry you either.
My dream final for Wembley Stadium on May 25th would be FC Barcelona vs. Bayern Munich; I think it'd be a very entertaining game. It'd be a 3-1 FC Barcelona win with Xavi or Carles Puyol lifting up the trophy.
It may not be Bayern that Barcelona faces, but I do see Tito Vilanova's men in London, winning the title.
I believe it will happen.
If I'm wrong, hey, I'm wrong.
But I feel this UEFA Champions League knockout stage is not as strong as in years past, and FC Barcelona are by far the strongest team in the competition. They learned their lesson from last year's CL disappointment, and Lionel Messi and the rest of the team will redeem themselves.
FC Barcelona: Looking to lift the European championship trophy for a third time at Wembley Stadium (1992, 2011) and the club's fifth European title, tying Barça with Liverpool for third-most European titles.
Thanks for reading. Feel free to respectfully comment in the comments section below.
This article is dedicated to my grandfather, Raymundo V. Cárdenas. I love you, Abuelo. See you in Eternity.
Xoel, the Voice of FC Barcelona on the net, period.