Former Liverpool star, Danny Murphy, has delivered his predictions for the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals.
Real Madrid will host Liverpool on Tuesday night in the Champions League quarter-final first-leg tie in Spain, while Manchester City will face Borussia Dortmund.
Reigning champions Bayern Munich will tackle Paris Saint-Germain on Wednesday, while Chelsea will face Porto.
Providing his predictions, Murphy told The Mail on Sunday: “Real’s teamsheet used to strike fear into opponents but not anymore,” Murphy told The Mail on Sunday.
“Injuries have prevented Eden Hazard from becoming another Galactico and their best players, Luka Modric, Karim Benzema and Toni Kroos, are all in their 30s.
“In fact, Liverpool carry the greater firepower with Salah, Sadio Mane, Firmino and Jota. Modric and Kroos are still capable of dictating the tempo of games but Real boss Zinedine Zidane will be concerned about the threat of Salah and Mane, who can spring attacks in an instant.
“Liverpool has more goals in their squad, and I would give them the edge.”
He added, “Against Juventus in the last round, Pepe won plaudits for being a defensive warrior while Oliveira and Taremi have quality going forward.
“But Porto were stretched at times and slightly fortunate to get through. They’ll be pragmatic against Chelsea, but Thomas Tuchel’s side are normally hard to score against in Europe (although not on Saturday in the Premier League!), and I think have enough matchwinners.
“Mason Mount is in amazing form, Kante and Jorginho will control the midfield and the stage is set for Ziyech or Pulisic to produce some magic.
“Porto will try to be clever and hit Chelsea on the break but the Blues have too many threats.”
Murphy continued, “Dortmund have the attacking threats of Haaland and Sancho and you could watch some of their goals and think they’re unstoppable.
“But they’re dodgy at the back, and facing City, with De Bruyne, Sterling and Gundogan against you is the last thing they need.
“It looks like a tasty tie, but if Manchester City doesn’t go through, I think they’ll be devastated. Dortmund only edged past Sevilla 5-4 on aggregate in the last round, and Man City are better than the Spaniards in the attack.
“While Erling Haaland is a handful, Ruben Dias, Aymeric Laporte and John Stones are better prepared than anyone to cope. ‘I’d be surprised if Dortmund can win over two legs.”
He concluded, “This’s a phenomenal match-up between last season’s finalists, but the absence of Lewandowski coupled with the anticipated return of Neymar for PSG puts this tie on a knife-edge.
“Of course, there’s no way this game is a foregone conclusion – how could it be when PSG have Mbappe but Bayern have attacking threats with Sane, Muller, Gnabry and Coman, who scored the winning goal in the final.
“Over 180 minutes, history favours Bayern.”
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