Champions League 2021 Predictions
The greatest tournament in club soccer is back for another year of memories and drama.
After a huge transfer window with soccer’s two greatest players of all time Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi switching clubs, this will surely be a Champions League season to remember.
Let’s predict how the Champions League 2021-2022 season is going to go.
Winner - Chelsea
The very obvious choice amongst most soccer fans would be PSG to win the Champions League, however, Chelsea has a legitimate shot to be the 2021-2022 Champions League winners as well.
Going back-to-back in this tournament has only been done once by Real Madrid, who had a three-peat in the tournament from 2015 to 2018. However, Chelsea's defense under Thomas Tuchel still has yet to have been broken down by anyone, and adding Romelu Lukaku to this squad with a thriving midfield that is arguably the best in the world.
Dark Horse - Atletico Madrid
This year's Dark Horse is Atletico Madrid. They added back club legend Antoine Griezmann to an attack that already had Luis Suárez and João Felix.
Atletico also has a top three goalkeeper in the world with Jan Oblak who shines under the bright lights. Their defense is also solid with the likes of Kieran Trippier, José Giménez, and Marcos Llorente. Don’t be shocked if Atletico makes a run to the semifinals or even the finals.
Flop - Liverpool
Liverpool of course on paper is a top club in the world, however it has not changed that much from 2018. While other team's across Europe’s top leagues have improved by a fine margin, Liverpool doesn’t have enough depth to balance out the Premier League, FA Cup, Carabao Cup and the Champions League. Be on the lookout for Liverpool to be an early out in this year's tournament.
Surprise - Borussia Dortmund
Borussia Dortmund will be this year's biggest surprise in the tournament. Dortmund has always been Bayern’s little brother when it comes to competing against top clubs representing the Bundesliga, but Dortmund has a shot to get past the quarter-finals.
Dortmund has not surpassed the quarter-finals since their finals appearance in the 2012-2013 season. Rising star Erling Haaland will prove to be crucial in their success this year. Not to mention, other young talents like Jude Bellingham and Gio Reyna.
Top Scorer - Erling Haaland
In last season's tournament, Erling Haaland won the golden boot, netting 10 goals after making it to the quarter-finals. Haaland has 20 goals in 14 matches in the Champions League for his career which is more than a goal a game on average. This special talent will continue his domination.
Top Assist - Lionel Messi
Considering Messi is the greatest playmaker of all time, it’s hard to argue against him leading the tournament in assists with a front line of Kylian Mbappé and Neymar Jr.
POTT - Lionel Messi
Messi will lead the Champions League in assists and probably come close in goals as well.
Messi will be the key factor in PSG’s chances of winning the tournament. Rarely has Messi ever let down his team, and it won’t happen this year.
Patrick Lepre is a first-year majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email email@example.com.