Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 20 September 2014

Real Madrid and Barcelona kept apart in Champions League semi-final draw

Lionel Messi's Barcelona face a tough tie against Bayern Muncih
Lionel Messi's Barcelona face a tough tie against Bayern Muncih

Real Madrid and Barcelona have been kept apart in the draw for the Champions League semi-final - keeping open the possibility of a 'dream' El Clasico final at Wembley.

 

The draw means Lionel Messi's side will have to come through against Bayern Munich, while Cristiano Ronaldo's side Real Madrid will play Borussia Dortmund.

The draw in Nyon will have pleased neutrals, keeping apart the two Spanish sides and the two German sides remaining in the competition.

FC Bayern Munich v FC Barcelona 
Borussia Dortmund v Real Madrid

Under the guidance of Jose Mourinho, Real have advanced to the final four after ties against Manchester United and Galatasaray. With their league hopes over, the Champions League has become Los Blancos top priority this season.

Of all the three sides they could have faced, they will perhaps consider they have drawn the weakest of the sides that remain.

Last year's Bundesliga winners needed two injury time goals to came through the last round against Malaga. On the domestic front, they have trailed in the wake of Bayern Munich this season. However, despite their tag as the underdogs, Dortmund are the only side remaining in the competition who are unbeaten in this season's Champions League.

Bayern eased past Juventus in the last round - winning 2-0 both home and away against the Italian league leaders in a real show of strength.

Pre-tournament favourites Barcelona scraped through the last round against PSG, needing a late substitute appearance from Messi to inspire them against their French opponents.

The draw means both the German sides will play the first leg at home, with the second legs taking place in Spain.

This year's final will take place at Wembley.

Ties will take place on 23rd/24thApril (1st Leg) and 30th April/1st May (2nd Leg).

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