We’ve got our final eight in the 2018-19 UEFA Champions League, and it’s a loaded group of combatants featuring four teams from the Premier League, and one each from Portugal, Italy, Spain, and the Netherlands.
But who’s the favorite to win it all?
[ RECAP: Bayern 1-3 (1-3 agg.) Liverpool ]
Positives: Sound defensively, experienced underdogs.
Negatives: A little too long in the tooth over two legs.
Positives: A bright collection of elite talent, naive enough to thrive.
Negatives: That same youth meeting the stage for the first time.
6. Manchester United
Positives: The Ole Gunnar Solskjaer bump is nearing tenure status, Paul Pogba and Romelu Lukaku won’t fear the stage.
Negatives: The center backs that Jose Mourinho wanted to reinforce his side haven’t arrived (though they did handle Kylian Mbappe well enough).
5. Tottenham Hotspur
Positives: Health is wealth, and Spurs’ key pieces are mostly back and breathing easy. Plus Mauricio Pochettino is a deft tactician and he knows it.
Negatives: First UCL quarterfinal since 2011, and the pressure that comes with it.
Positives: They’ve come this far with a batch of relatively average performances from Mohamed Salah.
Negatives: Still in a vicious league title fight.
Positives: The UCL wherewithal of one Cristiano Ronaldo, as well as Leonardo Bonucci, plus a sleepwalk journey through Serie A.
Negatives: It’s been 23 years and five lost finals since Juve last won it, a fact the area is keen to remind the club. Weight.
2. Manchester City
Positives: Pep Guardiola and the best depth in the world.
Negatives: That depth doesn’t extend to Fernandinho, plus there’s the specter of not having won it.
Positives: They’ve won it before and have the best player to ever lace ’em up.
Negatives: Plenty of pieces untested on that stage.