Jake Osgathorpe analyses the Champions League quarter-final draw using the Infogol expected goals (xG) model, with Manchester City’s quest for a maiden title looking good.
Bookies' favourites Manchester City have been imperious in this competition so far, allowing just 0.31 expected goals against (xGA) per game across eight matches, but this represents their toughest test to date.
Dortmund, led by the competition’s top scorer Erling Haaland, nervously edged past Sevilla in the last round, but have been notably vulnerable defensively both domestically and in Europe.
Infogol calculates that Manchester City have an 84.3% chance of progression to the semi-finals, with Pep Guardiola’s side having a 35.2% chance of breaking their Champions League duck.
Odds correct at 12:11 BST (05/04/21)
Porto caused the only major upset in the last round, knocking out Juventus thanks to a pair of inspired defensive performances, especially in the second leg, when playing over an hour with 10-men.
Chelsea were extremely impressive in brushing aside a dangerous Atletico Madrid side in the last round, with their defensive improvements under Thomas Tuchel eye-catching. They limited Atletico to just 1.40 xG over two legs, while creating plenty, so they should be feared.
The Blues will be over the moon with this draw, and Infogol calculates that they have an 81.6% chance of making it through to the semis, while moving into third favourites according to the market and the model (16.9%).
Reigning champions Bayern Munich had no issue in the last round, swatting aside Lazio with relative ease over two legs, though they did notably concede in both matches, something that has become all too common this season.
PSG were nervy in the second leg against Barcelona despite holding a 4-1 lead thanks to a dominant first leg display. They do get Neymar back ahead of this tie, and Mauricio Pochettino will have had longer to work with his new players.
This looks to be an excellent tie, with plenty of goals likely, but the Infogol model makes Bayern 63.7% favourites to progress, with their attack likely to be too hot to handle.
The record winners of this competition, Real Madrid, made light work of a decent Atalanta side in the last round, but on the whole haven’t been overly convincing in this season’s competition, or domestically for that matter.
Neither have Liverpool, but they too impressed in the last 16, easing past RB Leipzig thanks to two excellent displays in which they created plenty and conceded little (xG: LIV 4.37 – 1.82 RBL). Getting players back fit, especially defensively, could help their chances of going deeper into this competition.
The Infogol model makes the Reds the 59.2% favourites to progress in this repeat of the 2018 Champions League Final, but this is set to be another exciting tie.
Infogol is forecasting a showdown of the two tournament favourites, Manchester City and Bayern Munich, in the semi-finals, and at this stage, the model would make City the favourites in that tie to progress.
The chances of an all-English semi-final in this side of the draw stands at around 48%, with the model making Liverpool marginal favourites if that were to be the case.
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