There was more drama than usual on Monday as the original draw for the Champions League Round of 16 which took place at UEFA’s headquarters in Nyon was mired in controversy.
With the 2022 final taking place in St Petersburg, UEFA’s Giorgio Marchetti drew the home teams whilst former Arsenal star, Andrey Arshavin, born in the city, picked out the away sides.
The draw quickly saw a mistake, however, as the Manchester United ball was initially put in the wrong bowl.
This meant that Arshavin paired them with their group stage opponents, Villarreal, which isn’t allowed under UEFA rules.
It’s believed that the Manchester United ball was then forgotten when Atletico Madrid were drawn out.
What it ultimately meant was that the Red Devils were drawn last, with their opponents, Paris Saint-Germain, already known.
That raised the prospect of another Messi v Ronaldo clash, however, due to apparent multiple complaints from the teams involved, UEFA were left with no option other than to do a complete re-draw.
The 2pm re-draw has thrown up a few very interesting ties, along with some repeat draws.
No doubt Chelsea will be one one of the happiest teams from the draw, as they have once again been drawn against Ligue 1 side Lille.
Meanwhile, Liverpool and Manchester United face potentially tricky ties, facing off against the Italian and Spanish league champions respectively.
The most noteworthy other draw is the super-tie of PSG facing off against Real Madrid, a tie that will see Lionel Messi and Sergio Ramos return to a club they both have a lot of history with.
Full Re-Draw as follows:
RB Salzburg v Bayern Munich
Sporting Lisbon v Manchester City
Benfica v Ajax
Chelsea v Lille
Atletico Madrid v Manchester United
Villarreal v Juventus
Inter v Liverpool
Paris Saint-Germain v Real Madrid
All first leg ties are to be played on February 15/16 and 22/23, with the second legs to take place on March 8/9 and 15/16.