Ronaldo’s Real Madrid face Neymar’s PSG in tie of the round as last 16 learn their Champions League fate
Former champions Barcelona and Chelsea square up again while Tottenham Hotspur face tough tie with Juventus
Cristiano Ronaldo’s Real Madrid will have to go through Neymar’s Paris Saint-Germain to land the first European Cup treble in 40 years after the Uefa Champions League round of 16 was drawn at Uefa headquarters in Nyon, Switzerland.
Former winners Chelsea will play five-time winners Barcelona in another meaty encounter while Tottenham Hotspur will take on Juventus.
Elsewhere, Manchester United take on Sevilla, Manchester City play Swiss side Basel and Liverpool face Porto.
No club has won the European title three years running since Bayern Munich in the mid-1970s, underlining how big an achievement it would be if Madrid – 12 times winners overall – won the trophy again in the final in Kiev in May.
They know exactly what it takes to be European champions, and in Ronaldo have the most prolific goalscorer in the competition’s history.
Emilio Butragueno, a Real director and former striker, regretted that one of the favourites would be eliminated so soon in the competition.
“For the potential of the two teams, luck has worked out this way and one of the two teams will be out at the last 16 stage, which we think is a bit soon taking into account they are two of the contenders for the title,” Butragueno told BeIN Sports Spain.
The final ties are Shakhtar Donetsk against Roma and Bayern Munich playing Turkish side Besiktas.
The draw saw the eight group winners and eight runners-up from the recently finished group stage drawn from separate pots.
No club could meet another from the same domestic association so that means, for example, the five English Premier League teams were kept apart. Similarly, no team could meet a side they faced in the group stages. This is not the case for the teams that make the quarter-finals.
The knockout stages begin on February 13-14 and 20-21 with the return legs on March 6-7 and 13-14.
Additional reporting by Agence France-Presse