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Arsenal handed glorious Champions League opportunity

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Arsene Wenger will return to former club Monaco after his Arsenal side were drawn against the French runners up. 

This has come as a welcome draw for the Gunners as they've previously had to face the likes of Bayern Munich, AC Milan and Barcelona. And those did not go so well. 

Arsenal haven't reached the quarter finals since 2010 when they were knocked out by Pep Guardiola's Barcelona. The last team they knocked out at this stage was Porto.

Arsenal

But Monaco have been the surprise of the tournament this year, winning a group consisting of Bayer Leverkusen, Zenit St Petersburg and Benfica. They are unbeaten at home in the Champions League and lost just one of their six group games (a 1-0 defeat away at Benfica).

Players who are likely to be of concern to Arsenal will be Portuguese midfield maestro, Joao Moutinho, former Manchester United striker, Dimitar Berbatov and Belgian under-21 international, Yannick Ferreira Carrasco.

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There is also the experience ofJeremy Toulalan and Ricardo Carvalho, but Monaco will be nothing compared to what Arsenal have faced in the last two years against Bayern Munich. In fact they probably faced a tougher test in the group stage against Borussia Dortmund. Arsenal should prevail and reach the last eight.

Chelsea

Meanwhile, Chelsea will feel slightly hard done by. Being group winners they'd have expected a kinder draw but they are pipped against Laurent Blanc's Paris Saint-Germain. 

They met PSG last season in the quarter-finals and lost 3-1 in Paris but managed to qualify thanks to a 2-0 win at Stamford Bridge. They will also face former Blue, David Luiz, in arguably the most intriguing tie of the entire draw. 

This time Mourinho has the likes of Diego Costa and Cesc Fabregas at his disposal and will be looking to go one step further and reach the final with Chelsea, something he is yet to achieve with the club.

Manchester City and the rest

Manchester City will face Barcelona in a repeat of last season last 16 tie. They lost 2-0 at the Etihad Stadium and 2-1 at the Nou Camp. City have been a bit Jeckyll and Hyde in the Champions League this year.

They only managed to get one point from two games against CSKA Moscow and Roma, but they managed two impressive wins over Bayern Munich and away in Rome in the final two group fixtures. A lot will depend on the fitness of Sergio Aguero and the form of Manchester City at the time. Also will Luis Suarez have kick started his Barcelona career by then? 

Elsewhere Real Madrid will face German side Schalke 04, in what looks a pretty routine tie. Atletico Madrid have been drawn against Bayer Leverkusen. Juventus will face Borussia Dortmund in one of the hardest ties to predict.

Bayern Munich will be favourites against Ukrainian side, Shakhtar Donetsk. Finally Basel and Porto both have the best opportunity they will ever get to reach the last eight. 

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Topics:
UEFA Champions League
Manchester City
Chelsea
Arsenal
Football

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