Champions League 2014: Last-Minute Preview of Tuesday's Second Legs

Rory MarsdenFeatured ColumnistMarch 11, 2014

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger applauds fans after the English Premier League soccer match between Stoke City and Arsenal at Britannia Stadium in Stoke On Trent, England, Saturday, March 1, 2014. (AP Photo/Rui Vieira)
Rui Vieira/Associated Press

The first quarter-finalists of this year's Champions League will be decided this evening as the last-16 second legs get under way. 

Arsenal will be looking to claw back a two-goal deficit from their home first leg against Bayern Munich, while AC Milan travel to Spain to take on Atletico Madrid, who currently lead 1-0 in the tie.

Read on for a last-minute preview of both matches.


Bayern Munich vs. Arsenal

Gero Breloer/Associated Press

At the same stage of last year's competition, Arsenal were in almost exactly the same position. Having gone down by a two-goal deficit at home in the first leg, they travelled to Germany with a mountain to climb.

On that occasion, a fantastic 2-0 win for the Gunners was still not quite enough to see them through as they went out on away goals having lost the first leg 3-1.

A repeat performance this time around would see them through to extra time after losing 2-0 in London last month.

In the first leg, Mesut Ozil missed a penalty, and Wojciech Szczesny was sent off. Boss Arsene Wenger has said ahead of the game that he is hoping for a fair refereeing performance in Germany:

Arsenal will hope to have Laurent Koscielny back in the side but will be missing left-back Kieran Gibbs and striker Yaya Sanogo.

Pep Guardiola will have a full squad at his disposal for this last-16 tie. The talismanic Franck Ribery returned to score in his side's 6-1 win over Wolfsburg in the Bundesliga at the weekend. 

Bayern are a massive 20 points ahead of second-placed Borussia Dortmund in the league and recently set a new record for consecutive wins.

However, this stat from Opta may offer Arsenal fans some hope of a comeback:


When: March 11, 7:45 p.m. GMT

Where: Allianz Arena, Munich

Watch: ITV 


Atletico Madrid vs. AC Milan

Antonio Calanni/Associated Press

AC Milan will be hoping that Mario Balotelli can start in this second leg having returned from a shoulder injury at the weekend.

With the Rossoneri 1-0 down from the first leg, they will need their top players to be on form if they are to become only the third team in Champions League history to overturn a home first-leg defeat, per BBC Sport.

And speaking before the game, manager Clarence Seedorf was confident that the seven-time winners of the tournament could pull of an historic turnaround:

When you lose the first leg, it is marvellous to be able to play again in a tie of such importance on the European stage.

We can write history once more. It is always great to play in a stadium like this.

We do not have to be worried by the atmosphere. We are ready for this kind of game.

Diego Simeone's Atletico side will be confident of seeing out the tie considering their home advantage and with top scorer Diego Costa back in the side.

However, if they concede an early goal, it could be a nervy night for Simeone's men as they aim to reach the Champions League quarter-finals for the first time in 17 years.


When: March 11, 7:45 p.m. GMT

Where: Vicente Calderon, Madrid

Watch: Sky Sports 1