Champions League Forecast: Will Anyone Stop Man City or PSG?

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It seemed like just yesterday that Kai Havertz’s first-half scoring strike catapulted Chelsea to the Champions League title in an all-England grand finale against Manchester City.

The 2021/22 Champions League campaign is just around the corner, and it already looks like Chelsea may need to greatly upset the odds in order to replicate last season’s feat. Let’s take a look at the five top favorites to end up clutching the Champions League trophy this term.

#5 Chelsea

Thomas Tuchel has turned this Chelsea side into a force to be reckoned with since taking over the reins from Frank Lampard last January. He steered the Blues from midtable mediocrity to the Premier League top-four and beat mighty Manchester City in last season’s Champions League Final.

The arrivals of Saul Niguez from Atletico Madrid and Romelu Lukaku from Inter Milan in the summer have added extra quality as Tuchel looks to replicate Zinedine Zidane’s success with Real Madrid and defend the European crown.

Chelsea have already lifted a European trophy this season, overcoming reigning Europa League holders Villarreal 1-0 in the UEFA Super Cup showpiece in August.

#4 Manchester United

Seeking their first Champions League triumph in the post-Sir Alex Ferguson era, Manchester United secured three major deals in the summer, showing they really mean business. 

In addition to capturing long-term targets in the shape of Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane, the Red Devils brought superstar forward Cristiano Ronaldo back to Old Trafford, just before the deadline.

United’s last Champions League success coincidentally came during the Portugal captain’s penultimate season at the club. So synonymous with Europe’s elite club competition, the all-time Champions League top scorer could give Solskjaer’s side an upper hand in their pursuit of continental glory.

#3 Bayern Munich

Another permanent Champions League fixture, Bayern Munich can never be discounted as potential winners in football today, especially after raiding RB Leipzig for highly-rated manager Julian Nagelsmann and the star duo of Dayot Upamecano and Marcel Sabitzer.

Led by one of Europe’s deadliest finishers in Robert Lewandowski, the perennial Bundesliga champions have reached the Champions League Final four times since 2010. After Paris Saint-Germain halted Bayern’s hopes of retaining the title in last season’s quarter-finals, the six-time European winners will be aiming for recovery this time around.

pep guardiola

#2 Manchester City

Despite splashing out stratospheric monetary figures since purchasing the club in 2008, the wealthy Manchester City owners are still waiting for their first Champions League title.

Pep Guardiola’s side suffered heartbreak in last season’s grand final against Chelsea in what has been their closest attempt at conquering Europe’s most prestigious club competition so far.

Despite failing to land Harry Kane from Tottenham, after a long-standing transfer saga, the Cityzens have acquired the services of Jack Grealish in a British-record deal. It’s all part of the club’s efforts to go one better than last season’s achievement.

#1 Paris Saint-Germain

Just like Man City, Paris Saint-Germain are desperate to wrap up their elusive first Champions League trophy after having made hefty investments over the past decade.

Last season’s semi-final elimination to City, of all teams, sent a clear message to Nasser Al-Khelaifi that something needs to be done in the summer to improve PSG’s chances of reaching the top of European football.

The signings of Euro 2020 winner Gianluigi Donnarumma, ex-Liverpool stalwart Georginio Wijnaldum, legendary Real Madrid captain Sergio Ramos and former Inter Milan speed demon Achraf Hakimi convey PSG’s desire to replicate their domestic form on the European front.

However, the ace up Les Parisiens’ sleeve this season is nothing less than one of the greatest players to ever grace the game and in sports today, Lionel Messi.

Surrounded by top-class players such as Neymar, Kylian Mbappe, Angel Di Maria and the Argentina skipper, it’s hard to make a case for PSG not being the overall favorite.

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