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Official: Real Madrid draw Liverpool in the UEFA Champions League Round of 16



Photo by FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP via Getty Images

With the group stages of the UEFA Champions League coming to an end this past week, teams who have made it to the knockout stages of the competition, including holders Real Madrid, learned their opponents in the Round of 16 today. The reigning champions face Liverpool in a replay of the last season’s finals.

Real Madrid are the only Spanish team left standing in the UEFA Champions League after finishing at the top of Group F. Rivals Barcelona, Atletico Madrid and Sevilla have all been eliminated from the competition.

Given that they had finished at the top of their group, Los Blancos could have been drawn against any of the second-placed teams from the other groups as no other Spanish team was left in the competition.

Meaning Real Madrid could have drawn Liverpool, Club Brugge, Inter Milan, Eintracht Frankfurt, AC Milan, Borussia Dortmund, and PSG. RB Leipzig were the only team not in contention as they were in the same group as Los Blancos.

In the end, it is Liverpool that have been drawn against Carlo Ancelotti & co. The reigning champions will play the first leg of the Round of 16 encounter away from home at Anfield, before hosting their opponents at the Santiago Bernabeu for the second leg.

It will be a replay of the last season’s finals which Real Madrid won to win their 14th European title. The Merengues had beaten Liverpool in the finals of the 2017/18 season and had overcome Jurgen Klopp’s brigade in the quarter-finals of the 2020/21 campaign.

Liverpool are currently eighth in the Premier League and have had a middling start to the season, while they have also been hit with injuries. But with the Round of 16 fixtures set to be played in February and March, they might have a full-strength roster by then.

Remaining Round of 16 fixtures:

RB Leipzig vs Manchester City
Club Brugge vs SL Benfica
AC Milan vs Tottenham
Eintracht Frankfurt vs Napoli
Borussia Dortmund vs Chelsea
Inter Milan vs FC Porto
PSG vs Bayern Munich

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Real Madrid News

Brazil ready to wait until June for Carlo Ancelotti – Romano



Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images

Earlier today, Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti spoke openly about the rumours linking him to the vacant Brazil national team job.

The Italian tactician has emerged as the top target for the Selecao to succeed Tite, who was let go of after the FIFA World Cup 2022.

The president of the Brazil Football Confederation (CBF), Ednaldo Rodrigues, has made it clear that Ancelotti is the preferred candidate for the job.

Reacting to the same, Ancelotti, during his press conference today, said: “The reality is that the Brazilian national team wants me and I love it and I’m very excited about it, but then I have to respect the contract I have and I want to fulfil it.”

“I’m not surprised that there are these rumours. It doesn’t affect me, it doesn’t worry me. I’m just focused on fulfilling my duties with this club and with this team. I’m still here until Real Madrid allow me to stay.”

While the 63-year-old might be saying that he wishes to fulfil his contract at Real Madrid, which expires in 2024, he did not shy away from stating that he was happy about Brazil’s interest in him.

And now, Fabrizio Romano (h/t Madrid Zone) is reporting that the Selecao are ready to wait until June to go ahead with the appointment of Ancelotti.

While the Italian tactician remains in control at this point at Real Madrid, things could change drastically over the next couple of months.

The La Liga title looks already out of the Merengues’ hands while they are also trailing Barcelona in the Copa del Rey semi-final. If they fail to go all the way in the UEFA Champions League as well, Florentino Perez could decide to make some changes, starting with Ancelotti.

Hence, Brazil are happy to wait patiently until June and see how the situation is at that point and whether Ancelotti is available. With no major matches coming up for the Selecao until September, they can afford to wait as well.

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