European soccer’s governing physique UEFA declared the preliminary draw void earlier on Monday after Manchester United was drawn by mistake and the English Premier League membership will in all probability be relieved.
However, it means followers shall be denied the mouthwatering prospect of watching Messi renew his rivalry with Ronaldo — for now no less than.
Carlo Ancelotti’s crew is the competitors’s most profitable facet ever with 13 titles and has been in good kind domestically of late.
It may even see Messi, a long-term enemy of Madrid all through his time at Barcelona, return to the Santiago Bernabéu.
Sergio Ramos, Madrid’s former captain, may even return to face the membership the place he received 4 Champions League titles. The defender moved to PSG initially of the season however has seen restricted motion due to damage.
Elsewhere, reigning champion Chelsea will nonetheless face French facet Lille — the one fixture that remained the identical from the preliminary draw.
Last 12 months’s runner-up Manchester City will face Sporting CP because it searches for its first Champions League trophy as six-time winner Liverpool takes on Inter Milan.
Meanwhile, one of many match favorites Bayern Munich will face Red Bull Salzburg whereas spectacular unbeaten facet Ajax faces Benfica.
The first legs of the round-of-16 ties are scheduled for February 15/16 and 22/23 with the returns scheduled for March 8/9 and 15/16.
The last is ready to happen in St. Petersburg, Russia, on May 28.