Champions League draw 2013-14: Manchester City draw Barcelona and Arsenal to play Bayern Munich in last-16

Nightmare draw for the two English sides that failed to top their groups

Ever since last week, Arsène Wenger and Manuel Pellegrini must both have known what was coming. Confirmation that Arsenal and Manchester City’s failure to win their groups would condemn them to take the most difficult of paths to the quarter-finals of the Champions League came when they were paired with Bayern Munich and Barcelona respectively.

After Arsenal’s nightmare in Naples and City’s miscalculation in Munich, there was an air of inevitability their punishment would be the harshest possible against the two outstanding sides in European football over the past three seasons.

Wenger, of course, has been here before and having watched his side capitulate at the same stage in the first leg last year, the Arsenal manager will be hoping for a performance more like the 2-0 victory at the Allianz Arena that was the spark that helped propel them into a fourth-placed Premier League finish.

It could have easily been another showdown with Real Madrid instead, with just Carlo Ancelotti’s side and reigning champions Bayern remaining as possible opponents as the draw progressed. But when Madrid were paired with Schalke, Arsenal’s odds to win the competition rose from 16/1 to as high as 40/1 with some bookmakers in recognition of the task that now awaits them against Pep Guardiola and co.        

Pellegrini’s City had been the first to learn their fate when Luis Figo drew his former club Barcelona out of the hat. That means a return to Catalonia for Yaya Touré, Txiki Begiristain and Ferran Soriano, although City’s midfield general, director of football and CEO will know the first leg at the Etihad will be crucial given their fallibility away from home this season.

“It’s very tough, but we are happy because we are here and we will fight for the trophy,” said Begiristain, who spent seven years at the Nou Camp in the same role he now occupies at City before leaving in 2010.

“It’s a wonderful draw and these are two big teams so it’s going to be great, great matches. The last game we played in Munich was a win against the champions of Europe [Bayern Munich] and that has given us a lot of confidence. We have shown we can score in all matches.”

Both Sergio Aguero and Lionel Messi should be back to lead their respective sides by then and Pellegrini will be anxious that his Argentine striker makes a full recovery from the ankle injury he picked up in Saturday’s victory over Arsenal.

Pellegrini revealed yesterday Aguero will be missing for “at least a month” and he has an enviable record against Barcelona having scored six goals in 11 appearances against them during his Atletico Madrid days. Should he return in time, Pellegrini will be confident his side can cause their opponents real problems if they can maintain their current form.

Yet the importance of City and Arsenal’s group stage slip-ups were underlined by the relatively favourable draws for Manchester United and Chelsea. Both won their groups on the final evening and will now face Olympiakos and Galatasaray in ties that look there for the taking.

Neither will be totally straightforward, however, with the Greek side having finished ahead of Benfica in their group and currently on the back of a 10-match winning domestic run, while Roberto Mancini’s Turkish champions were good enough to knock out Juventus last week.

The return of Didier Drogba for the second leg at Stamford Bridge will give the tie an extra edge, while Jose Mourinho will also be well acquainted with the threat of Wesley Sneijder having managed him to Internazionale’s Champions League triumph in 2010.

Of the English contingent, though, it was David Moyes who had most to celebrate. Europe has so far provided a welcome distraction to his travails in the Premier League and United should be too strong for a club that has reached this stage of the tournament for the first time in four seasons.          

Elsewhere, Dortmund’s reward for edging out Arsenal for top spot will be a tie against Zenit St Petersburg, who qualified for the last 16 despite earning just six points in the group stage. Paris Saint-Germain will be strong favourites to reach the quarter-finals again after being paired with Bayer Leverkusen. Milan, the competition’s sole remaining Italian representative, face a tricky encounter with Diego Simeone’s dark horses Atletico Madrid.

Draw for the last 16 of the Champions League...

Manchester City v Barcelona

Olympiakos v Manchester United

AC Milan v Atletico Madrid

Bayer Leverkusen v Paris St-Germain

Galatasaray v Chelsea

Zenit St Petersburg v Borussia Dortmund

Schalke v Real Madrid

Arsenal v Bayern Munich

 

The first legs will be played on 18/19 and 25/26 of February and the second legs 12/13 and 19/20 March.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'
10 best statement lightbulbs

10 best statement lightbulbs

Dare to bare with some out-of-the-ordinary illumination
Wimbledon 2015: Heather Watson - 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Heather Watson: 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

Briton pumped up for dream meeting with world No 1
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve
Dustin Brown: Who is the tennis player who knocked Rafael Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?

Dustin Brown

Who is the German player that knocked Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?
Ashes 2015: Damien Martyn - 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Damien Martyn: 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

Australian veteran of that Ashes series, believes the hosts' may become unstoppable if they win the first Test