What are the H2H records of the semifinalists in the two European competitions?
The semifinal draw for the Champions League and the Europa League were revealed on Friday with the eight active teams in European competitions learning their fates.
In the Premier European competition, two-time defending Champions Real Madrid will face a tough test against Bayern Munich whereas the other semifinal pitting AS Roma against Liverpool ensures that an underdog will make the final this year.
The Europa League draw also saw the same trend, with two favourites Atletico Madrid and Arsenal set to face each other with RB Salzburg taking on Marseille for a spot in the final.
This article looks at the head to head records of the semi-finalists.
UEFA Champions League:
#1 Bayern Munich 11-2-11 Real Madrid
The most high profile tie undoubtedly pits 12-time Champions League winners Real Madrid against 5-time winners Bayern Munich. The two European giants are very familiar with their opponents, having played each other 24 times in Europe and their head to head record remains dead even.
Both Real and Bayern have won 11 matches each, with 2 draws. The tie is so evenly matched with Real scoring 37 goals – only one ahead of Bayern. The quality of the two teams is so evident in the fact that they have never met outside the Premier European competition.
Both have been masters at getting through to the business end of the competition, with six of their two-legged ties coming in the Champions League semifinals.Bayern has the edge in their semifinal meetings, progressing to the final four times compared to Real’s two.
However, it is recent history that works in Real’s favour. Real has beaten Bayern in each of their past four meetings, scoring 11 goals and conceding just three.
#2 Liverpool 2-2-1 A.S Roma
Jurgen Klopp and co have to be over the moon with the Champions League semifinal draw that has seen Liverpool been drawn with A.S Roma. While they stand the risk of going the Barcelona way if they underestimate the Giallarossi, Liverpool will still start as favourites against a side whom they beat in the 1983-84 Champions League final to claim the trophy.
That match was the first of five meetings between the two clubs and the Italians are still seething over that penalty shootout defeat they suffered in their only Champions League final – that too at their home stadium.
They would meet again 17 years later – this time in the fourth round of the UEFA Cup. The two clubs would trade wins, but once again Liverpool would progress – this time 2-1 on aggregate. The Reds would once again go on to win the entire competition that year.
Roma would win a historic Italian title that year which would see them qualify for next year’s Champions League. They were once again drawn alongside Liverpool in the second group stages. Roma went to Anfield in their final group game, needing just a draw to progress to the quarterfinals.
However, Liverpool got the better of them for the third time as goals from Jari Litmanen and Emile Heskey saw the Reds complete a 2-0 victory.
This year’s tie would see Mohamed Salah return to his former club – having scored more goals for Liverpool this season than during the past two seasons combined for Roma.
UEFA Europa League:
#3 Olympique Marseille 0-1-1 RB Salzburg
Marseille and Salzburg hadn’t played each other in competitive matches before this year’s Europa League – but by the end of the competition, there would have been four matches between the two.
The French side was drawn alongside Salzburg in the same group in the first round and their first meeting saw the Austrians take the spoils at the Red Bull Arena 1-0. Salzburg would continue their impressive form, winning their group with a game to spare.
Marseille would welcome Salzburg to the Stade Velodrome in the final league match, needing to match Konyaspor’s result to secure the second spot. A goalless draw was enough to do that and both clubs progressed to the knockout stages.
Salzburg had the tougher journey to the semifinals, having to go through Real Sociedad, Borussia Dortmund and Lazio – with the final match seeing a remarkable 4-1 second leg turnaround to force a 6-5 aggregate win.
Marseille would beat Braga, Bilbao and most importantly Salzburg’s German cousins RB Leipzig to reach the semifinals. With the winner of this tie considered to be the whipping boys for either Arsenal or Atletico Madrid in the final, the onus will be on both teams to produce a great performance.
#4 Arsenal 0-0-0 Atletico Madrid
When Arsenal and Atletico Madrid line up against each other at the Emirates Stadium on 26 April, it will be the first time the two sides have met at the European stage. Arsenal might be the bigger club, but Atletico have had better European success in recent years.
The Rojiblancos have won the two Europa Leagues, the La Liga, the Copa del Rey, the Spanish Supercup and two UEFA Supercups in the current decade – in addition to reaching two Champions League finals. Arsenal’s trophy cabinet for the same time period has three FA Cups and three Community Shields with no impact whatsoever in Europe.
Arsenal had been tipped for the title since the group stages and reinforced their credentials with a thrashing of AC Milan in the Round of 16 – but their impressive run has been blighted with losses to the likes of Cologne and Ostersunds.
Atleti had dropped down to the Europa League after finishing third in their Champions League group behind Roma and Chelsea and their 100% record was eradicated when they lost to Sporting in the quarter-final second leg despite an aggregate victory.
However, Arsenal might be more passionate about winning the title since this is the only route left for them to reach the Champions League next season. While Atleti are second in the La Liga and virtually assured of finishing in the top four, Arsenal lie 13 points behind the final Champions League spot in England.