Champions League knockout-phase action kicks off Tuesday, and with it, a slew of matchups that could go either way courtesy of the ever-looming influence of form.
Top-flight heavyweights accustomed to straightforward progression to the next stage are mired by uncharacteristic displays of late which is likely to result in an exciting eight-pack of clashes.
Here’s a look at the first round of knockout matches ranked by their potential for all things appealing:
Manchester City vs. Monaco
What to look for: Goal-friendly Monaco has bagged three or more tallies in five of its last eight in all comps and lead Europe’s top five leagues with 100+ goals courtesy of a dynamic young attack and a reborn Radamel Falcao. Manchester City also boasts a healthy front four led by Kevin De Bruyne, wingers Leroy Sane and Raheem Sterling, and nifty newcomer Gabriel Jesus, though there are concerns at the back with a stiff backline and a worrisome Claudio Bravo.
Excitement factor: 10 (out of 10)
Prediction: Monaco (5-4) on aggregate
Real Madrid vs. Napoli
What to look for: Fans of nil-nil draws, turn away. Those not in tune with …read more
Source:: the score la liga