At first glance and without any in-depth research it’s tempting to give Dortmund a free pass to the semi-finals however I’m sure Jurgen Klopp will have many a sleepless night waiting for this tie to come around.
Malaga have shown tremendous character not only in the Champions League but in their domestic form. This is a club that has been struggling under the weight of financial uncertainty and yet still fins the will to produce performances of verve and power.
The Spanish playmaker Isco is a wonderful talent who is not afraid to shoot from anywhere while Joaquin and Javier Saviola have been reborn under the careful management of Manuel Pellergrini who in my opinion is one of the world’s best man managers and tacticians. They’ll have to make the home leg count.
Winners in 1997, Dortmund have saved their best for the Champions League especially now that their Bundesliga crown has gone. In Robert Lewandoski they have one of Europe’s top strikers and with rumors persisting that the POle could be on his way this summer, he’ll want to leave the Westfallen on a high. Mario Gotze is also high on the wanted list of Europe’s elite and his guile, imagination and silky skills can open up any back line.
Klopp will be aware that maintaining the team shape throughout both legs will be the key to success.
Who wins this one…?
Report: Man City, Guardiola to discuss new contract this summer
This shouldn’t come as much of a surprise given City’s outstanding sophomore season under Guardiola.
Unbeaten City has an 11-point lead on the Premier League table after 18 weeks, with one draw and a PL record 16-straight wins. They have 56 goals scored, conceding just 12.
They’ve won five of six UEFA Champions League matches, only losing a match their opposition needed and they did not, 2-1 to Shakhtar Donetsk in Ukraine. City faces Basel next, and visits Leicester City in the League Cup quarterfinals Wednesday.
West Ham pulled out of the drop zone with the win, but has three bottom-half battles coming up over the festive fixtures: Saturday versus Newcastle, Dec. 26 at Bournemouth, and Jan. 2 versus West Brom.
U.S. Women’s National Team forward Alex Morgan (Orlando Pride) and Keylor Navas of Costa Rica and Real Madrid each earned Female and Male Player of the Year honors, after boasting tremendous 2017 seasons.
Morgan who primarily plays for Orlando in the NWSL, was also a member of Lyon, who went on to win the Women’s Champions League this past season.
Navas, on the other hand, played a key role in Real Madrid’s UEFA Champions League run, as well as Los Blancos’ La Liga title.
For Morgan, the award is her third since CONCACAF began handing out its annual awards in 2013. Meanwhile, Navas has now won Male Player of the Year on two occasions.