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MLS 2016 preseason roundtable: PST’s writers discuss the hot topics

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Ahead of the 2016 Major League Soccer season kicking off this Sunday, PST’s crew of five writers thought this would be a good time to discuss the hot topics.

[ MORE: All of PST’s 2016 MLS previews ]

Below are some tough questions we all try our best to answer, as an exciting season in North America’s top flight awaits.

Enjoy, and feel free to answer yourself in the comments below.


The team your most excited about seeing this season is _____ & why?

Joe Prince-Wright: Orlando City. Any team with Kaka is worth watching. As long as they can sort out the defensive issues they had last season they’ll be hugely entertaining going forward, especially with Cyle Larin around and new man Nocerino.

Nicholas Mendola: Orlando City SC. With Kaka and Nocerino together, along with Cyle Larin up top, the second season should go much better than the first.

Andy Edwards: Once again, it has to be the Vancouver Whitecaps. They were already the most enjoyable team to watch, in my opinion, last year, and they went out and added a 25-year-old scorer of 100 professional goals (Masato Kudo) and a two-time World Cup veteran in winger Christian Bolaños. They doubled-down on fun, how could you not like that?

Kyle Lynch: I think Orlando City will be an exciting team to watch this season. Cyle Larin has a year of experience and Antonio Nocerino could be the signing of the offseason.

Kyle Bonn: Oh man, the league is so deep this year, there’s not one team that truly stands out this season. Has to be Toronto because they have the most to prove with their star-studded lineup.


Who will score more goals this season: Sebastian Giovinco or Cyle Larin?

JPW: I like Larin’s chances of doing it big this year. Plus, Giovinco may miss time for Euro 2016. That said, it will be tight. I’ll go with Larin, Canada’s next great hope.

NM: Giovinco.

AE: Tough to say. There’s obviously a bit of regression to Giovinco’s otherworldly numbers from last year (right?), not to mention he might miss time for EURO 2016 and he’s being pushed out to the left wing to begin the season. On the other hand, Larin is still just 20 years old, and if we know anything with absolute certainty, it’s that players that age go through pretty drastic peaks and valleys. I’ll take Giovinco by a couple — say, 17-14 on the season.

KL: Giovinco will score his share of goals, but I’m going with Larin on this one.

KB:  Larin because he’s a pure goalscorer, but it will be close. Giovinco goals+assists will outdo Larin by quite a large margin.


Will the Atomic Ant suffer a sophomore slump? Discuss.

JPW: No way. This guy is pure class. It’s all about Toronto slotting the right pieces around him.

NM: You’ll have to define sophomore slump. Giovinco is coming off a season that is nearly unrepeatable so might his numbers drop off? Sure, but I doubt we’ll see a legit drop-off in form.

AE: Not a sophomore slump — he’s as season a pro as anyone in the league — but the combination of no longer playing as a second striker and the league’s defenses having seen him for an entire season does make me think he’ll fall short of matching last season’s numbers, though the team around should be hugely improved so we won’t necessarily have to do so.

KL:  He may not put up such a historic season statistically, but he will still be the most dangerous man on the pitch in any game he plays. I don’t expect his numbers to be as high, but I wouldn’t call it a slump.

KB: No, because he’s class. Carry on.

Sebastian Giovinco, Toronto FC
Sebastian Giovinco, Toronto FC

After impressive offseason moves, LA is pretty stacked y’all. Do the Galaxy storm back in 2016 to win it all?

JPW: This really could go either way but I’m inclined to say they use the experience of Keane, Gerrard, Cole and Giovani to go deep in the playoffs. Not sure if they’ll win it all, but they’ll be very, very good.

NM: They’ll be very, very good, but I do worry about the age of the group. Ruling them out is silly, but I’m not calling them the favorites.

AE: In one word, yes.

KL: It will be interesting to see how some of the new signings transition to MLS, but the Galaxy are all in to win the title this season. They have plenty of talent to make the playoffs, and once they get there, it’s hard to bet against that much big-match experience.

KB: No. In fact, I don’t think they’re that good of a team. It’s an old, name-driven squad and I think they take a step back. They’ve somewhat lost the mojo.


Will solid outfits New York Red Bulls, Columbus Crew stay atop the East?

JPW: Sure, they’re basically the same teams who battled it out at the top of the East last season but I would like to have seen some bigger signings for both. That said, continuity in MLS is key.

NM: They’ll be near the top, but their Northern neighbors in Toronto and Montreal will threaten, if not take, the top.

AE: They’ll both be in the top four in the East, but to me it’s Toronto FC’s conference to lose. I realize how insane it is to say that.

KL: When the regular season ends, expect both these teams to be in similar positions towards the top of the table.

KB: Yes. They hardly lost anything of consequence outside of Matt Miazga, and they both should pace the conference.


Usual suspects to dominate out West?

JPW: I think the same teams who made the playoffs last year will repeat in 2016. Colorado, Houston, San Jose and RSL not catching up quick enough.

NM: L.A. will be very good, and Dallas and Vancouver are still the class of the league on the basis of consistency and depth. Seattle and Portland will have a battle with several teams to stay in the mix.

AE: For the most part. With the exception of Real Salt Lake, it’s hard to see anyone bridging that gap between playoff teams and non-playoff teams. San Jose and Houston will both be much better this season, but so will the teams on which they’re supposed to be making up ground.

KL: I see the same teams making the playoffs, but the regular season is going to be a battle. The West has a whole lot of talent, and I think the standings will stay very close throughout the year.

KB: Yes and no. It’s such a deep conference, it’s hard to tell what direction things will play out. Sporting KC has a lot to prove after last season, and FC Dallas is young and on the way up. Portland returns as defending champions but not the favorites, so that’s all you really need to know.


Drogba, Gerrard, Lampard, Pirlo, Cole. Who has the best season?

JPW: Lampard. I think this is the year he will truly shine, if he stays healthy. He and Pirlo will be given the keys by Vieira.

NM: Drogba, if only because the others have a ways to rise to meet his 2015. Pirlo will do much better under Patrick Vieira and with an understanding of the league.

AE: I actually think Lampard has a really good season this year, if for no other reason than he should be healthy coming into the season and he’s had a few months to pick up the pace and feel for the league. Drogba shouldn’t play more than 24 games during the regular season — there’s just no use in it — so his numbers won’t be what they could have been.

KL: I’ll go out on a limb and say Pirlo. After a very disappointing first season, a player of Pirlo’s class will surely turn things around.

KB: Drogba, the only one with any gas left in the tank.

Didier Drogba,
Didier Drogba, Montreal Impact

Jordan Morris over/under 10 goals & 10 assists?

JPW: I’m going over. Seen enough of him to know he will cause defenses all kinds of problems. With Oba Martins gone, he’ll have a big impact.

NM: Under… but not by much.

AE: Under. Well under, actually. If he can chip in 7 goals and a handful of assists, Seattle will be fine. That’s Clint Dempsey‘s team now, and he’ll assume a lot of the scoring responsibility that Obafemi Martins left behind. Nelson Valdez will be the “surprise” standout of the Sounders attack this season.

KL: I think he’ll break the ten goal mark in his rookie campaign, although his assist numbers may be lower.

KB: Close, but under. I think he might hit the goal tally, but the assists will be tough for him to mark.


Rank the Portland Timbers’ chances of a repeat out of 10… Go!

JPW: 4. Rode a hot streak last season. Will still be a threat in playoffs this season.

NM: 2. Really found their form late last year but it felt like riding a hot streak rather than showing pure class.

AE: 5

KL: 3/10. Repeating in this league is hard to do, and getting through the West is going to be a gauntlet.

KB: Probably a 3. It’s already tough to repeat no matter who you are, but that conference is stacked, so it will be even tougher. That’s less a knock on them and more a parading of their competition.


Who will be 2016’s breakout player?

JPW: Harry Shipp. Despite his move to Montreal, he will prove Chicago wrong for letting him leave. And look out for Eric Miller in Colorado too…

NM: Shkelzen Gashi, Colorado

AE: We’re already quite familiar with Kekuta Manneh, but he goes for 25 goals and assists combined this season.

KL: Tim Parker with the Vancouver Whitecaps. Coming off of a strong rookie campaign, Parker earned a call-up to the USMNT camp and solidified a spot as Vancouver’s starting center-back. He could develop into a top defender.

KB: Joevin Jones. This is kind of a weird pick because he’s a known quantity, but I think he steps it up a notch. The guy has 51 caps for T&T as a 24-year-old. Fifty-one! He’s on an attack-minded Seattle team, and I think he can really turn on the jets down the flank.


And your preseason pick for MVP and Coach of the Year?

JPW: Cyle Larin & Greg Vanney

NM: Michael Bradley & Patrick Vieira

AE: David Villa & Bruce Arena

KL:  For MVP I’m going with Fabian Castillo of FC Dallas, and I’ll take Orlando City’s Adrian Heath for Coach of the Year.

KB:  Giovani dos Santos is a good pick for MVP, as he will need to carry that team. Coach of the Year is going to Jesse Marsch.

Cyle Larin, Orlando City SC
Cyle Larin, Orlando City SC

Which coach could be the first to go?

JPW: Not sure how much longer Pablo Mastroeni may last at Colorado if they struggle early on.

NM: Jay Heaps, New England

AE: Jim Curtin, Philadelphia

KL: If the Rapids get off to a slow start, Pablo Mastroeni may be on his way out.

KB: Jim Curtin has to be on a short leash with all the changes taking place there.


How big of an impact do you expect Earnie Stewart’s offseason moves to have in Philadelphia?

JPW: I think the Union will improve this season. Not saying they’re going to make the playoffs but if they’re hovering outside with a few months to go, look at what Montreal did last year… Stewart could work his contacts to draft in plenty of very good free agents in the summer months.

NM: The Union will be much, much improved, but it’s still hard to think they not only make up the 12-point gap they had from the final playoff spot and see too many teams drop behind them.

AE: In the long term, hopefully quite a bit. This season, I’m not sold at all (I was never sold on Curtin being the guy, either). If they start slow and another season appears to be going down the drain, Stewart won’t hesitate to get rid of Curtin and bring in “his guy.”

KL: I like what Stewart’s done with the Union, but I think the results might come slowly at first.

KB: This is tough. They didn’t bring in any big names, so he’s hoping they mesh together well. It might take a while for the players to figure things out, and time isn’t exactly a luxury the club can afford. So not well, is my guess.


Patrick Vieria: hit or miss at New York City FC?

JPW: Hit. Has the mentality to instantly demand respect of players and he will get the best out of the star names.

NM: Hit, although that postage stamp of a pitch is going to drive him bonkers

AE: I’m cautiously optimistic about Vieira’s NYCFC tenure. The part of the job that worried me with him — the roster rules and regulations — have been navigated incident-free this offseason, thanks to Claudio Reyna and staff, so now it’s time for Vieira to take quite a talented squad and make all the pieces fit.

KL: Miss. Kind of. It’s his first gig and he’s adapting to a completely different league, so there will be a learning curve. I wouldn’t put any bets on NYCFC making a deep run.

KB: Hit. New coaches often take time to work into their role, especially in MLS, but he’s a sharp soccer mind, and that roster has potential.


Favorites for the US Open Cup?

JPW: My automatic selection is always Seattle. It’s like Arsenal and the FA Cup.

NM: Columbus Crew.

AE: FC Dallas — does any team in the league have more interchangeable depth?

KL: Seattle loves playing in the Cup, so I’ll go with the Sounders.

KB: I like New York to make a run here, since a lot of the Western teams will be occupied with a tough opponent each and every week.


Surprise package of the season: which team will come from nowhere to impress?

JPW: Sporting Kansas City. Not sure if they’re quite coming from nowhere, but last year was a down year for Vermes and SKC. I expect them to come back in a big way.

NM: No one. The teams that will improve a lot are teams that have superstars and disappointed last year: NYC and Orlando.

AE: New York City FC will make the playoffs, and that’ll surprise a lot of people.

KL: I think San Jose has some good young pieces and a great coach in Dominic Kinnear. They’re not a contender, but if they steal a few wins the playoffs could be possible.

KB: Hard to say. I don’t think there are many surprises this season, but if I’m going out on any kind of limb, it would be behind Orlando City. They can make moves in a shallow East.


Expect another bad year from _____

JPW: Chicago Fire. New coach in Paunovic who may take some time to figure this out. Lots of work to do in Illinois.

NM: Colorado. They have pieces, but ultimately there’s too much quality above them in the West.

AE: Chicago Fire. Veljko Paunovic is apparently playing the long, long, long game with regards to their rebuild.

KL: Real Salt Lake.

KB: LA Galaxy. Another step back as their competition goes ahead. I’m not a big fan of their offseason, and I don’t think it will be a season to remember.


MLS Cup 2016 will be played between which teams, and who wins?

JPW: Toronto and Seattle. TFC wins it 2-1.

NM: Toronto FC 4-3 FC Dallas. Go crazy now.

AE: LA Galaxy 3-1 Toronto FC.

KL: FC Dallas vs. New York Red Bulls, with MLS Cup heading down to Texas.

KB: Montreal vs. Seattle. Montreal wins. Drogba scorched the league at the end of last year, and while that form is unsustainable for a full season, it’s just about making the playoffs and getting hot. If they manage his minutes right (which could be difficult) and keep him fresh for the playoffs, he could make them a dangerous team in the Cup format.

Jozy Altidore, Toronto FC
Jozy Altidore, Toronto FC

Destroyed Barcelona a ‘disaster’; dominant Bayern react after 10-goal stunner

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Barcelona – Bayern Munich reaction. How do you have a reaction to that?

Barcelona 2-8 Bayern Munich. Yep, that was the score in the Champions League quarterfinal. That’s why the Barcelona – Bayern Munich reaction post-game saw both sets of players and coaches looked utterly stunned. It was the first time since 1946 that Barcelona had conceded eight times in a game and they had no answer to Bayern’s relentless attacking.

[ MORE: 3 things we learned ]

Lionel Messi and Barcelona’s players and coaches looked totally stunned towards the end of the game as Bayern could have easily scored 11 or 12 goals. We are not exaggerating. This looked like the end of an era for Barcelona, as their players were outclassed and overpowered throughout.

Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu had this to say: “A very hard night. I’m sorry for the fans, for everyone. We weren’t the team we are or the club we represent… Today has been a disaster. Now we have to take decisions. Some we had already decided before today. Above all we have to say sorry to the fans.”

[ VIDEO: Alphonso Davies magical assist ]

Barcelona boss Quique Setien didn’t have much else to add, as his time as Barca boss is surely up but he did state that his team were ‘destroyed’ in the dressing room in Lisbon after the game.

“The truth is it is a defeat tremendously painful. Scoreline maybe too harsh, but for sure they deserved many of the goals. The team was overrun at many times. We started very well, but the decisiveness of (Bayern) in many areas overcame us… The dressing room is destroyed. I’m not going to talk about what is needed at the club. I’ve been here for just a few months. If Gerard Pique says that it’s time for big changes there’s going to be importance to his words. It’s time for us to review and take the decisions which are needed for the future.

“The fans? The team did what we could and the rival allowed us to. We started well and as the game went on, we were beaten… We are all tremendously frustrated at the moment. It hurts but we have to accept it. You have to think always that the future will be better, that you can improve the image we showed today, above all thinking of the future. I think that right now it’s too soon to be talking about whether I stay at the club or not. The reality is that it doesn’t depend on me. It’s worth all of us working out what’s important and considering a wide range of things which correspond to a defeat of this importance and which is so painful.”

[ MORE: Champions League schedule ]

Setien may not be in charge of that future, as he only took charge in January but has struggled to galvanize a talented but error-strewn Barcelona side. Setien has overseen one of the most embarrassing nights in Barcelona’s history and although his ageing players were outclassed, the way they kept making the same mistakes time and time again surely points to his managerial style not fitting this squad.

Barcelona veteran Gerard Pique summed it up best.

“Embarrassment is the word, no one is indispensable. If new blood has to come and change the dynamic I’ll be the first to exit and let it happen. Now, we have reached the bottom,” Pique said. “I’m in pain. We all are. We can’t compete like that. It’s very, very tough to take. Nothing more is worth saying. The club needs changes. Not just the players, I don’t want to point out anyone.

“But football is a sport where change is constantly required. We must change the dynamic we are on because I believe we have just hit bottom. We have to look around, we have to trust that people will do the right things for the club. Is it an end of an era, I’m not sure? But I know that we must accept that we have hit bottom. Not just players the but, as a club, we aren’t on the right road. We have had years of success but we haven’t won the league and we haven’t won in Europe and we have to compete. You’ve seen it on the pitch and this today is unacceptable. This was a horrible game… it’s a dreadful feeling. It’s shameful. Structurally we need changes at all levels.”

On the other side of the Barcelona – Bayern Munich reaction, Thomas Muller continued his amazing season to score twice and grabbed an assist as the German legend summed up the focus in the camp of the German champions as they want to win the Champions League and not dwell on their humbling of Barcelona.

“Of course it’s a big statement. The semifinal starts from 0-0. Statement doesn’t matter,” Muller said. “I know the other teams watch our games. They can be impressed or not. It starts from 0-0. We have to be quiet, calm and relaxed, also a little bit happy. Tomorrow morning when we wake up and answer the whole messages on our phone from home and the whole world, then we have to focus and concentrate on the next game. That is our business. We are not here to win the quarterfinal or semifinal. We are here to win the final. I know these tournament situations a lot. Most of the times after these big wins it is more difficult, so we have to be careful.”

Muller and Bayern are ruthless and hungry for more, as he also said they can be more aggressive in their remaining Champions League games.

Hansi Flick has created a ruthless winning machine, as Bayern have scored 26 goals in the six Champions League games he’s been in charge since replacing Niko Kovac in November and they’ve won 27 of their last 28 games in all competitions and are unbeaten since December 7 and have won the Bundesliga and German Cup.

The treble is on for Bayern after their historic humbling of Barcelona.

3 things learned as Bayern Munich beat Barcelona 8-2

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Barcelona – Bayern Munich was a UEFA Champions League classic as Bayern ran riot in Lisbon to book their spot in the semifinals as they won 8-2. That’s right. 8-2.

[ MORE: Barca, Bayern players reaction ]

Bayern scored early and often as both teams had chances galore but the German giants took theirs with Thomas Muller scoring twice, plus Ivan Perisic and Serge Gnabry scoring one each. Joshua Kimmich, Robert Lewandowski and Philippe Coutinho (twice) all scored in the second half after Luis Suarez pulled one back to make it 4-2.

Early on Barcelona briefly made it 1-1 through David Alaba’s own goal but Lionel Messi and Co. were dominated and made so many defensive errors. Hansi Flick’s Bayern will now face the winner of Manchester City v. Lyon in the semifinal, while Quique Setien’s brief spell in charge of Barcelona is surely over.

[ MORE: Champions League schedule ]

The game started at an incredible pace as Jerome Boateng defended superbly with Suarez lurking, then Bayern took the lead. Lewandowski and Muller combined and the latter finished to make it 1-0, but soon it was 1-1. Jordi Alba’s cross was shanked into his own net by Alaba to level things up.

Barca then went close as Suarez was denied by Manuel Neuer, then Messi hit the post as his cross missed everyone and struck the woodwork as four Barcelona players were left clutching their heads in disbelief.

[ VIDEO: Alphonso Davies magical assist ]

Chances kept on coming for both teams in an entertaining, end-to-end clash with Messi forcing Neuer into a save. Perisic then drilled home a low shot to make it 2-1 and Bayern almost scored a third but Marc-Andre ter Stegen saved well. They did make it 3-1 soon after as Gnabry drilled home a low shot after fine passes from Thiago and then Leon Goretzka.

Muller made it 4-1 before the break as Joshua Kimmich’s cross found the veteran German at the near post as Barcelona kept conceding chances, and goals. In the second half Suarez made it 4-2 early on to give Barca a chance of an unlikely comeback but that’s all it was. Alphonso Davies’ amazing assist set up Joshua Kimmich to make it 5-2 and Lewandowski got his goal to make it 6-2 as Barca were humiliated further when their player, Coutinho, on loan at Bayern rolled two home late on to rub further salt into their wounds.

Here’s a look at what we learned from Barcelona – Bayern Munich, a truly memorable Champions League quarterfinal.


BARCELONA THEIR OWN WORST ENEMIES

No team had conceded four goals sooner in a Champions League knockout match and this was the first time Barcelona conceded five or more goals in a Champions League match in their history. It was also the first time since 1949 that Barcelona had conceded seven goals in a single game. It was also the first time since 1951 they lost a game by six goals and the first time since 1946 that they conceded eight goals in a game. It was also the first time a team had scored eight in a Champions League knockout game. Yes, Bayern were clinical but Barcelona caused their own problems time and time again and it was all too easy for the Germans. Ter Stegen was hellbent on playing the ball short inside his own penalty box which put Barca under pressure, while Sergi Roberto and Frenkie de Jong were totally overpowered in midfield and Nelson Semedo was bullied at right back. Barcelona kept making poor defensive mistakes and anybody who has watched them since the restart in La Liga will understand why. This is not a new thing. Bayern could have scored more and Barcelona were just woeful and looked totally devoid of confidence late on. Messi and Co. looked stunned in the final stages of the game, and for most of the 90 minutes. Bayern were good but the story here was about Barcelona being woefully bad.

END OF AN ERA AT BARCELONA?

Messi, Suarez, Busquets, Vidal, Pique. What do they all have in common? Four of them are 33 years old and Busquets is 32. This feels like the end of an era at Barcelona. Of course, Messi is Messi and he can play until he wants as he whipped in delicious deliveries in the first half but didn’t have enough help around him. Even he gave up in the second half. This Barcelona team couldn’t cope with the pace and power of Bayern and they just gave up and Messi was one of the worst culprits. Earlier this season the Argentine legend was outspoken when it came to asking questions of the powers that be and his own teammates and he knew. He knew that big problems were coming and Barca were in big trouble. They still finished second in La Liga and reached the last eight of the Champions League but that’s not good enough for Barcelona and this was one of the most humiliating nights in their history. Quique Setien doesn’t seem to have the belief of his squad but in truth, this Barcelona team is running on empty. It has been for a long time. Is it the managers fault, or the fault of their ageing squad which has been so good for so long but not rebuilt out of faith to their superstars and a haphazard recruitment process? The answer is a little bit of everything and this defeat will be at the core of a dramatic Barcelona rebuild.

BAYERN’S HIGH-LINE A PROBLEM

The one negative for Bayern was how many chances they gave to Barcelona, especially in the first half. Their high-line was problematic but perhaps they pinched so high up so they could give Barcelona’s shaky defensive problems? Either way, they can’t play that high of a line against Manchester City or Lyon in the semifinal. Alhonso Davies and Joshua Kimmick were left exposed at full back and that is something they should address because this game, and result, is likely be a freak one. Aside from that defensive line, they were dominant, powerful, hungry and classy throughout. The German champions are full of confidence and are the red-hot favorites to win the Champions League. Barcelona – Bayern Munich will go down in history and Bayern will be feared by everyone if they weren’t already.

VIDEO: Alphonso Davies turns on style with amazing assist

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Alphonso Davies ladies and gents. Alphonso Davies.

The Canadian teenager set up Bayern Munich’s fifth goal in their demolition of Barcelona in the UEFA Champions League quarterfinal and he did it in some style.

[ LIVE: Champions League scores ]

Remember: the Vancouver Whitecaps product only broke into Bayern Munich’s first team as a regular earlier this season and he’s now ripping it up against Barcelona in the latter stages of the Champions League.

He will be pinching himself right about now as he played a key role in a classic Bayern display as they tore Barcelona apart and could have scored seven or eight easily.

Alphonso Davies, 19, totally bamboozled Barcelona’s right back Nelson Semedo on more than one occasion way out on the left flank. He then drove towards goal, skipped past another defender and put it on a plate for Joshua Kimmich to make it 5-2.

Check out the video below to see Davies doing what he does best for the assist, as the teenager is surely going to become the best left back on the planet.

His incredible story continues as his first season as a regular for Bayern Munich has been a hugely memorable one.

Champions League, Europa League: How to watch, odds, start time, predictions

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The UEFA Champions League and Europa League action has resumed and I’m going to reveal my predictions for this next round as well as the latest odds for Europe’s top two continental tournaments.

[ LIVE: Champions League scores

With Manchester City still in the Champions League and Manchester United still in the Europa League, there is a lot on the line for the two Premier League clubs in the next week.

Just because the Premier League season is over, that doesn’t mean the action is over. Far from it. Both Manchester clubs are the bookmakers favorites to seal their respective European glory.

[ LIVE: Europa League scores ]

In the next few days the Europa League semifinals and Champions League quarterfinals will take place as the mini tournaments take place in Germany and Portugal.

Man City beat Real Madrid 4-2 on aggregate, while Chelsea lost Bayern 7-1 on aggregate as they crashed out of the Champions League. Man United beat Copenhagen in extra time and will face Sevilla in the semifinals and are the lone Premier League club after Wolves were knocked out by Sevilla.

Lisbon, Portugal will host the Champions League games from the quarterfinal stage onwards, while the Europa League games will be hosted around Germany.

Below is a look at my predictions, the odds for the games this week and how to watch and follow all of the fixtures in the USA.


How to watch, stream Champions League and Europa League

Dates: August 5-23
Location: Quarterfinals onwards in Lisbon/Germany
How to watch: CBS Sports
Live updates: UCL here at NBCSports.com & Europa League here at NBCSports.com


JPW’s Champions League predictions

Quarterfinals (August 12-15)
Wednesday, August 12: Atalanta 2-3 PSG
Thursday, August 13: RB Leipzig 1-2 Atletico Madrid
Friday, August 14: Barcelona 1-3 Bayern Munich
Saturday, August 15: Manchester City 3-1 Lyon


JPW’s Europa League predictions

Semifinals (August 16-17)
Sunday, August 16: Sevilla 1-2 Manchester United
Monday, August 17: Inter Milan 2-0 Shakhtar Donetsk


Champions League betting odds via DraftKings

Quarterfinals (August 12-15)

(+210) Atalanta v. PSG (+117). Tie: +275
(+225) RB Leipzig v. Atletico Madrid (+135). Tie: +220
(+235) Barcelona v. Bayern Munich (+115). Tie: +255
(-305) Manchester City v. Lyon (+750). Tie: +450

Outright winner
Bayern Munich (+150)
Manchester City (+250)
Paris Saint-Germain (+250)
RB Leipzig (+900)
Lyon (+5000)


Europa League betting odds

Quarterfinals (August 10-11)
(+195) Sevilla v. Manchester United (+150). Tie: +215
(-132) Inter Milan v. Shakhtar Donetsk (+350). Tie: +280

Outright winner
Inter Milan (+160)
Manchester United (+190)
Sevilla (+280)
Shakhtar Donetsk (+800)