Who said what: Reactions to the UEFA Champions League quarter-final draw
Players and managers react after the Champions League quarter-final clashes are announced..
Four excellent ties were pulled out of the bowl by Welsh legend Ian Rush and eight teams learned their fate in the UEFA Champions League. The only remaining English club in the mix, Leicester City face Atletico Madrid in their maiden Champions League quarter-final tie. The Premier League Champions progressed to the last eight after they beat Sevilla.
Borussia Dortmund on the other hand, face AS Monaco, and after beating Manchester City, the Ligue 1 club are now set to battle with the mighty German giants. Defending Champions Real Madrid will face FC Bayern Munich, while their Spanish rivals Barcelona face Juventus in a repeat of the 2015 Champions League final.
Here’s how representatives of each club reacted to the draw.
Borussia Dortmund vs AS Monaco
The CEO of Borussia Dortmund Hans-Joachim Watzke spoke about the tie and said, “We wanted to avoid a German-German duel just like the Bavarians.That worked. We can not do it in Monaco with a very strong opponent. I've seen her return to Man City - that was convincing.
“And Monaco’s goal difference in the French league, plus 58, also says a lot. We are looking forward to the attractive lot and the quarter-finals in the UEFA Champions League!”
Manager Thomas Tuchel knows just how exciting and well Monaco play, “A very exciting, very difficult lot. Monaco have conquered fellow favourites Man City in two spectacular games. It is a very homogenous team with a great individual class and an outstanding coach. We need twice our absolute best performance to eliminate this opponent."
The Vice-President of AS Monaco Vadim Vasilyev was optimistic about his side’s draw against Borussia Dortmund saying, “It's a beautiful poster because Borussia Dortmund is a team that plays attacking and attractive football and the Champions League is the bonus. The priority remains the Champions, and the team has no limits to what they can achieve.”
Real Madrid vs Bayern Munich
Emilio Butragueno, the Real Madrid director of relations added that the club had hoped for better luck in the Champions League draw.
“Bayern are one of the worst opponents we could have drawn. That's the case for them too. We know each other very well. We know how difficult it's going to be. We'd have liked to meet them further on in the competition, but it's a special tie."
He further added, "It is if we get a good result over there. They have top players and 20 good minutes for Bayern can be lethal. Carlo's a fantastic coach with vast experience. He has won it all as a coach. We have a great relationship, he's a gentleman."
Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane was against the notion that they have an easy tie, saying, “In the Champions League we got a very good & very tough opponent. We know that is going to be a difficult match, it's a hot field. We will try to play a good match & win.”
The Frenchman further added, “I have not spoken with Carlo. They have a good team that is doing very well. It will be a very nice match.The possibly of winning the Champions League and the League excites me."
While former Real Madrid and current Bayern Munich midfielder Xabi Alonso spoke after the draw, saying, “It will be a great tie. Both clubs are historical greats in Europe and for me it will be a very special match-up. We are ready for it. The most important thing is to get a decent result from the away leg as we know how difficult is to play in the Bernabeu.
“That said, they also know what it means to visit us in the Allianz Arena.”
Leicester City vs Atletico Madrid
The Premier League champions face their toughest test as they take on a team that has made the to finals of two of the last three Champions Leagues, Atletico Madrid. However, manager Craig Shakespeare had a lot to say after the draw.
“Facing a team who have reached the final in two of the last three seasons is a massive challenge but it’s just the kind of tie you expect in the quarter-finals of the Champions League. Atletico Madrid are a very good team with some fantastic individuals with experience in the competition, but we’ll be ready to give everything to progress.”
He further added, “It will be a brilliant occasion for our supporters and for everyone at the Club but, before the players can begin to think about these games, we have Premier League matches to come that are of huge significance to our season. They will be our sole focus.”
Juventus vs Barcelona
Juventus vice-President Pavel Nedved believes in the Bianconeri and spoke about it at length after the draw.
"It’s a fascinating tie. We know what a strong side Barcelona are, but we must be brave and take the game to them. We’ve come on a long way since the last time we crossed paths in the 2015 final and I believe that this is the right time to be facing them again.”
He also believes that the Old Lady are more than ready for the challenge, “I don’t mind going to the Camp Nou for the return leg. That’s what happened when I was playing all those years ago and it ended well for us. In these kinds of matches, it doesn’t matter where you’re playing.
“We’ve two tough legs coming up. Both at home and away we need to be right on top of our game. If we want to reach the next round then we must do something out of the ordinary, but we feel ready. May the best team win.”
Barcelona captain Andres Iniesta believes that the Champions League tie will need the players to be at their very best. “It will be a passionate, difficult and beautiful tie. We will face a great team with many good players. We will have to play two great matches to get to the next round. Juventus have been in very good shape in recent years, they have a great manager who is doing things very well for a long time, they are comfortable leaders in their league and are doing well in the Champions League”
He further added “ It will be a difficult tie but with our capabilities, we aim to push the tie in our favor. It also will be a great, meeting with Dani, a player with whom we lived many years together and shared great moments.”
This is what Radamel Falcao thought about the draw:
While Borussia Dortmund’s Sebastian Rode had this to say:
Alvaro Arbeloa welcomed Xabi Alonso back:
And Matt Hummels was equally excited to face Real Madrid again:
Leicester City man Kasper Schmeichel also tweeted about it:
While former England and Leicester striker Gary Lineker had somewhat optimistic ideas about the draw:
As Juventus take on Barcelona, both Sami Khedira and Paulo Dybala knows just how tough the Catalan team are: