Charlie Nicholas' Champions League predictions: Will Manchester City and Juventus win?

Tuesday 12th March 2019 18:00 GMT

Here's how the former Arsenal and Scotland forward sees the second legs going...


Manchester City vs Schalke (8pm)

It was an awkward game for them the first game, and big teams respond. That is what it is all about. How did that happen with 10 men? This is what they do.

Raheem Sterling hit a hat-trick at the weekend and they have done the business again - they have the winning mentality at the moment. One more goal and it is more or less done, and then Schalke have to take risks, but they won't do it in the first 20 minutes.

Everyone is clambering over Virgil van Dijk for player of the year, but Sterling's finishing and all-round game has improved so much. He has proven a lot to people but how good can this kid get? I expect Sterling to be the match-winner again.

CHARLIE PREDICTS: 3-0 (11/2 with Sky Bet)

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Juventus vs Atletico Madrid (8pm)

It's my game [on Soccer Special] and I'm looking forward to it.

I am a fan of this stage of the competition. There will be a big team going out here and as Atletico hold a 2-0 lead, I think it will be Juventus.

I respect what Diego Simeone is all about. It is easy being defensive-minded but it takes a lot of courage to be bolder and braver like the way they play. The whole foundation with what he has done at Atletico is brilliant, they know how to defend. From an Arsenal perspective, I would be looking at those defenders who are not getting a game at Atletico.

I cannot see Juventus winning by three and I expect Atletico to score at least one. Cristiano Ronaldo is going to have to respond big-time if Juve are to have any chance.

CHARLIE PREDICTS: 2-1 (8/1 with Sky Bet)

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Bayern Munich vs Liverpool (8pm)

It's another big test for Liverpool.

Van Dijk missed the first leg, so if people are putting him right in there as the best defender in the world and winning player of the year by a distance then this is the game for him to step up.

However, Bayern have returned to top of the Bundesliga and are playing with a swagger now, so this one will be a difficult game for Liverpool.

I do think Liverpool will score but they will have to give the front three as quick a service as possible. It may have to be counter-attack football and Liverpool are at their best when they play like that.

With the tie being balanced, Liverpool will play on counter-attack and I have a decent feeling about this for them.

CHARLIE PREDICTS: 1-1 (6/1 with Sky Bet)

Barcelona vs Lyon (8pm)

Barcelona are flying at the minute. People are saying they are not as good as what they were but I would debate that.

Philippe Coutinho has found it difficult as well as Ousmane Dembele. The reality is that they have missed Neymar. In midfield they have Ivan Rakitic, Sergio Busquets and Arturo Vidal, who has similar attributes to Xavi. He has quick passing and is very good in possession. Lionel Messi can then be quiet but all of a sudden blow you away.

Defensively, they have improved so much under Ernesto Valverde. On top of this, Marc-Andre ter Stegen is challenging Manuel Neuer and David de Gea I think as one of the best in the world

Barcelona let Lyon off the hook at Parc Olympique Lyonnais. They should have scored and this time I think it will be a straight-forward tie for them.

CHARLIE PREDICTS: 3-1 (9/1 with Sky Bet)

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