Barça have got the toughest possible rival in the last 16 of the 2013/14 UEFA Champions League having been drawn against Manchester City in today’s draw in Nyon. The first game will be played in Manchester on Tuesday 18 February with the return at Camp Nou three weeks later on Wednesday 12 March.
The clash with City will see a re-encounter with ex-Blaugranas Txiki Begiristain, Ferran Soriano and Toure Yaya. Soriano left Joan Laporta’s board in 2008 and became a director at City in 2012 bringing in Beguiristain as director of football. City are currently fourth in the English Premier League but their free-scoring style makes them favourites to beat Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool to the title while in the Champions League they impressed by finishing equal on points with Pep Guardiola’s Bayern Munich.
It is almost certainly the most difficult opponent we could face. Our main advantage could be City’s relative inexperience in the Champions League as this is the first time they have reached the last 16 of the tournament. We have never played City in Europe before though they visited Camp Nou in the summer of 2009 and beat us 0-1 in the Joan Gamper tournament.
The full draw is as follows:
Manchester City vs FC Barcelona
Olympiakos vs Manchester United
AC Milan vs Atlético Madrid
Bayer Leverkusen vs Paris Saint Germain
Schalke 04 vs Real Madrid
Zenit vs Borussia Dortmund
Arsenal vs Bayern Munich