Monday 20 November 2017

Leonardo on bended knee after PSG draw Barca

David Beckham, the one remaining English player at a club still involved in the Champions League, is set for a meeting with Lionel Messi after his club Paris St Germain were drawn against Barcelona in the quarter-finals.

The draw kept Barcelona apart from Real Madrid, keeping alive the possibility of an unprecedented meeting between the two Spanish clubs in the final at Wembley in May.

Madrid will take on Galatasaray; Bayern Munich's reward for seeing off Arsenal is a meeting with Celtic's conquerors Juventus, while Borussia Dortmund play Malaga.

PSG sporting director Leonardo insisted Barcelona were red-hot favourites, saying: "It is the most difficult draw against the best team in the competition, but we are looking forward to it because Paris deserves to be part of what will be a celebration of football.

"We get the chance to measure ourselves against one of the greatest sides of all time. Barcelona are the red-hot favourites."

After the draw, Leonardo asked his girlfriend Anna Billo, an Italian TV presenter, to marry him live on air – she initially stalled before accepting.

Barca's sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta said the experience of being 2-0 down to AC Milan in the last round had hit home with the players, who came close to perfection in their 4-0 second-leg victory. He said: "We have just experienced something that demands us to be prudent."

Irish Independent

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