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Previewing UEFA Champions League Round of 16 second leg

The first slate of Round of 16 matches is headed into the second leg this week. We break down what to watch for this first week of second leg play in the Champions League.

Marko Grujic of FC Porto competes for the ball with Alvaro Morata of Juventus during the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 match between FC Porto and Juventus at Estadio do Dragao on February 17, 2021 in Porto, Portugal. Photo by Jose Manuel Alvarez/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

The UEFA Champions League is back in action this week as all the Round of 16 matches head into their second leg. There was plenty of action throughout the first leg with some surprising results as well as some very much expected results. Let’s take a look at all four matches coming this week as teams will close out their first knockout round ties.

All odds courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.

Juventus v. FC Porto, Tue, Mar 9, 3 p.m., TUDN

Juventus: -230
FC Porto: +600
Tie: +375

FC Porto came out on top in the first leg with a 2-1 score line at home back on February 17th. They went up 1-0 early on thanks to a second-minute goal from Mehdi Taremi while Moussa Marega followed up with the game-winner immediately after the second half whistle blew. Juventus tried to mount a comeback late as Federico Chiesa pulled one back in the 82nd minute, but they couldn’t find the equalizer before time expired. It’s not a terrible situation for Juve, though, as Chiesa’s goal could prove to be a giant one, putting his side in a position where all they need is a 1-0 win at home in the second leg to advance to the next round on away goals. Juventus controlled an overwhelming 66% of possession in the first leg, and they’ll look to do the same and close out the series at home.

Borussia Dortmund v. Sevilla FC, Tue, Mar 9, 3 p.m., TUDN

Borussia Dortmund: +110
Sevilla FC: +235
Tie: +270

Borussia Dortmund survived a late looming comeback from Sevilla to hang on for a 3-2 win in the first leg of this series, thanks to a brace from UCL-leading scorer Erling Haaland. Sevilla got out to an early lead with a seventh-minute goal from Suso, but Dortmund went on to score three unanswered with Mahmoud Dahoud grabbing his in the 19th minute, while Haaland finished up with two goals in the 27th and 43rd minutes to head into the halftime break with a 3-1 lead. Luuk de Jong pulled one back for the Serie A side in the 84th minute, but the home side was unable to find an equalizer and now head into the second leg with a fairly big disadvantage. In the best case scenario for Sevilla, they’ll need to notch a 2-0 win on the road to advance to the next round, which doesn’t seem likely given how good Dortmund are at home. If they can’t pull off a 2-0 win, they’ll need to score at least three goals to counter Dortmund’s three away goals they put in the bank in the first leg. All signs point to a black-and-yellow win here, but that’s no surprise given they were the favorites heading into the first leg.

Liverpool v. RB Leipzig, Wed, Mar 10 3 p.m., TUDN

Liverpool: +110
RB Leipzig: +240
Tie: +255

The Reds got off to a great start with a 2-0 away win over RB Leipzig in the first leg. The teams were deadlocked at the halftime break, but two second half goals from Mo Salah and Sadio Mane in the 53rd and 58th minutes respectively put the away team out of reach for the Bundesliga giants. Liverpool is in an amazing position for the return leg, as not only do they hold a 2-0 lead, but those are both away goals as well. All they’ll need to do is keep Leipzig from scoring two in this match and the Reds will be on their way to the next knockout round. While they recently snapped a four-game losing skid in EPL play, this will be refreshing and morale-boosting for Liverpool as they can all but turn on cruise control in the second leg. Leipzig won’t be down and out right away, as they’ll come out swinging looking for an early goal. Liverpool is technically the home side, but the match will be played in Budapest, just as the first leg was, so the teams should be just as even as they were in the first.

Paris Saint-Germain v. FC Barcelona, Wed, Mar 10, 3 p.m., TUDN

Paris SG: +118
Barcelona: +185
Tie: +315

Paris Saint-Germain, even with the absence of Neymar, got the job done on the road against Barcelona with a commanding 4-1 win over the Spanish giants. After going down 1-0 after Messi sent in a penalty in the 27th minute, young superstar Kylian Mbappe unleashed fury as he bagged a hat trick, scoring in the 32nd, 65th, and 85th minutes to put the game away. Moise Kean added a goal for the visitors in the 70th minute as well. Although Neymar made his way back to training for PSG just recently, it’s doubtful that he’ll be fit enough to make an appearance in the second leg. It’s just as well, though, because it’s unlikely that manager Mauricio Pochettino would want to risk Neymar’s health in a series that they have all but wrapped up. Barcelona has a mountain to climb as they’ll need at least four goals to get the win. Don’t count them completely out yet, though — PSG players and fans most likely still have a little bit of PTSD from the last time these sides met in Champions League play, when Barcelona rolled over PSG in the second leg with a score of 6-1 to advance to the next round after PSG had won the first leg 4-0. PSG will approach this game with caution, but all signs are pointing to an early exit for Barca as it stands.