Who can Liverpool, Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea and Tottenham draw in the Champions League last 16?

The five Premier League sides are all flying high in the Champions League this season, but who could your team be drawn against in the Round of 16?

Luke Brown
Thursday 23 November 2017 19:50
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The English clubs are flying high in Europe
The English clubs are flying high in Europe

English teams are enjoying something of a renaissance in the Champions League this season. With the group stage of the competition almost at an end, all five of our teams are sitting pretty at the top of their respective groups.

Manchester City, Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea have already booked their spot in the next round as well as topping their group, which means they will play a group stage runner-up.

Liverpool have all but guaranteed their spot in the next round, although they could yet finish second in their group which would see them play a group stage winner.

Ditto Manchester United, who are through barring a disastrous set of results.

So who are the English clubs likely to play in the next round? Here, we outline the permutations.

Round of 16 draw rules

First of all, the rules. In the draw for the Round of 16, the eight group-stage winners are all seeded, while the runners-up are all unseeded. The seeded teams are then drawn against the unseeded teams, with the seeded teams playing at home in the second leg.

So far, so simple – right?

But there are a couple of catches. Teams from the same group cannot play one another – so Group H winners Spurs cannot play Group H runners-up Real Madrid, for example – while teams from the same country cannot play one another either.

Potential banana skin alert: Real will be unseeded for the draw

Which means, unfortunately, there’s going to be no Manchester United vs Liverpool European showdown until at least the quarter-finals, when seeding goes out the window and teams from the same association can be drawn against one another.

The draw for the Round of 16 will be held on 11 December at Uefa HQ in Nyon, Switzerland. The first legs will be played on 13, 14, 20 and 21 February, with the return legs played on 6, 7, 13 and 14 March 2018.

With that in mind, here’s a look at who the five English teams can play for a place in the quarter-finals.

The pots

Pot 1 as it stands (club coefficient ranking): Manchester United (14), Paris Saint-Germain (6), Chelsea (15), Barcelona (3), Liverpool (32), Manchester City (8), Besiktas (28), Tottenham Hotspur (21).

Pot 2 as it stands: Basel (20), Bayern Munich (4), Roma (30), Juventus (5), Sevilla (7), Shakhtar Donetsk (16), Porto (12), Real Madrid (1).

Manchester United, Group A winners

United are sitting pretty at the top of Group A

Potential opponents as it stands: Bayern Munich, Roma, Juventus, Sevilla, Shakhtar Donetsk, Porto, Real Madrid.

Spurs have thrown a massive spanner into the works for all the English teams by beating Real Madrid to first-place in Group H: the reigning champions are the obvious team for United to avoid. Bayern, Juventus and Roma are the other big banana skins.

That leaves three ties United would view as winnable: Sevilla, Shakhtar and Porto. There’s still a very good chance Sevilla could beat Liverpool to the top of Group E, however, which would increase the chance of United playing one of the biggest teams in Europe in the next round.

Chelsea, Group C winners

As it stands Chelsea only have three potential opponents in the next round

Potential opponents: Basel, Bayern Munich, Juventus, Sevilla, Shakhtar Donetsk, Porto, Real Madrid.

Chelsea's win over Qarabag lifted them to the top of Group C which at least means they will avoid potential Round of 16 showdowns with Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain.

But, as it stands, pot two isn't that much easier. Bayern Munich and Real Madrid are the teams to avoid while Chelsea will hope they are not drawn against Italian champions Juventus, having already lost to Roma.

Liverpool, Group E winners

Liverpool are still in pole position to top Group E

Potential opponents: Basel, Bayern Munich, Roma, Juventus, Shakhtar Donetsk, Porto, Real Madrid.

Liverpool will naturally be desperate to avoid Bayern, Juventus and Real. Roma is another tough game, but they will see Basel, Shakhtar and Porto as far more winnable matches.

It’s vital Liverpool win their final match against Spartak as otherwise they could be beaten to top-spot by Sevilla and end up playing one of PSG, Barcelona or Besiktas – which is much tougher.

Manchester City, Group F winners

City will fancy their chances against anyone

Potential opponents: Basel, Bayern Munich, Roma, Juventus, Sevilla, Porto, Real Madrid.

As with the other English teams, Bayern Munich, Juventus and Real Madrid are the teams to avoid. Although playing as they currently are, City will surely fancy their chances against all three.

Roma would be a difficult match. But Basel, Sevilla and Porto shouldn’t pose too many problems to Pep Guardiola’s side.

Tottenham Hotspur, Group H winners

Tottenham topped their group ahead of Real and Dortmund

Potential opponents: Basel, Bayern Munich, Roma, Juventus, Sevilla, Shakhtar Donetsk, Porto.

Spurs fans will be delighted to know they’ve made life more difficult for all of their English rivals by unexpectedly topping Group H ahead of Real Madrid, meaning the defending champions will be unseeded for the Round of 16 draw.

But Spurs could still play either Bayern Munich or Juventus in the next round – two of the biggest and strongest teams in the competition.

Mauricio Pochettino’s side would be the favourites to progress if drawn against either Basel or Porto, although Sevilla and Roma are potential banana skins.

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