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UEFA Champions League Round of 16 2nd Leg Preview: AC Milan vs Tottenham Hotspur

We’re up and running already in the UEFA Champions League Round of 16. After a bit of a lengthy vacation from Europe’s top flight, sixteen teams from all walks of the world’s equatorial continent privileged to have made it through the preliminaries contested in what served as the first leg of the competition’s last 16.

You can view all second round previews here!

Chelsea vs Borussia Dortmund

Club Brugge vs Benfica

Eintracht Frankfurt vs SSC Napoli

Inter Milan vs Porto

PSG vs Bayern Munich

RB Leipzig vs Manchester City

Real Madrid vs Liverpool

Where Things Stand

It was of course eventful in every way. RB Leipzig held Manchester City to a 1-1 draw at home ground in Germany, Inter Milan secured a 1-0 home victory over Portuguese FC Porto, Bayern Munich came out on top against Paris Saint German in arguably the ‘biggest, colossal tie of the season", Chelsea fell to a 1-0 loss at the hands of Borussia Dortmund.

Club Brugge conceded a 2-0 loss to Benfica, Milan were victorious over Tottenham Hotspur, their Italian counterparts and Serie A leaders, Napoli posted a 2-0 away win over Eintracht Frankfurt. And last but not the least, in fact the greatest, Real Madrid pulled big rabbits out of their hats to defeat Jurgen Klopp"s Liverpool 5-2 at the Anfield Stadium.

All sixteen teams have a short break to take. Some have to get their backs into grinding hard for a spectacular result if progression into the quarter-finals of the competition is anything to go by. Some, speaking of clubs like Madrid, simply have to defend a stellar first-leg result, play out a decent game. But phase-two would be upon us in less than a week"s time. Liverpool make the return trip to the magical, spell binding Santiago Bernabeu. Messi, Mbappe and the rest of the PSG pack touch down in Munich as they look to write their home errors wrong and keep their Champions League hopes alive.

We"re trusting this to be more scintillating, intriguing and exhilarating than it was in the first. And so, we delve into, half hastily, half detailedly, the match-ups slated for the next two weeks and how exactly we see them pan out.

BIG DISCLAIMER: The predictions are not to be taken score for score, verbatim. They"re just meant to give a picture of the final outcome we expect in the match-ups.

AC Milan vs Tottenham Hotspur

AC Milan claimed the victory in their first UEFA Champions League knock-out game since 2014, courtesy of Brahim Diaz"s seventh minute strike. It was an exact reverse of the scoreline the last time the two met in the Champions League in 2011, with Tottenham winning 1-0 at the San Siro back then. Ever since Antonio Conte underwent surgery in February, managerial responsibilities have been handled by Cristian Stellini. The Italian boss has a 50-50 record with three wins and three losses apiece, one of which includes the 1-0 loss to Sheffield United in which Tottenham were dumped out of the FA Cup.

Conte is expected to return to take hold of the reins in Spurs" weekend Premier league fixture against Wolves so that should give him a little bit of time to get in the groove ahead of Tuesday"s all important fixture against Rossoneri.

Tottenham are not too far behind and qualification is till very possible, the tie being wide open. Spurs would have to do what they have to do without a few of their key men, missing Hugo Lloris, Yves Bissouma and Rodrigo Bentancur. AC Milan on the other hand would be unable to deploy Zlatan Ibrahimovic upfront despite the Swedish striker having recovered from injury( due to his ineligibility to play the Tottenham game) and would be relying heavily on the duo of Oliver Giroud and Rafael Leao.

This tie would be the most difficult to predict amongst the eight steming from the minute disparity between both sides. A draw or a marginal win for Tottenham looks probable though.

Prediction: Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 AC Milan

Players to watch:

Tottenham: Harry Kane, Son Heung Min
AC Milan: Oliver Giroud, Rafael Leao

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