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Champions League round of 16: Meet the teams

Key players, rankings, ones to watch: all you need to know about the UEFA Champions League round of 16 teams.

Meet the Champions League last 16
Meet the Champions League last 16

There are nine former winners in the UEFA Champions League round of 16. UEFA.com profiles all the remaining contenders.

Round of 16 fixtures

15 February & 9 March

Sporting CP (POR) vs Manchester City (ENG)

Sporting CP

UEFA ranking: 28
Group C: runners-up (W3 D0 L3 F14 A12)
Last season: UEFA Europa League play-offs (L 1-4 vs LASK)
European Cup best: quarter-finals (1982/83)

Campaign in ten words: Mightily impressive recovery after September setbacks for vibrant young side.

UEFA.com Sporting reporter: The outlook was bleak after the Lions opened their first group stage in four years with back-to-back defeats but three straight wins – and big ones at that – saw them through to the knockouts for only the second time. Some debut campaign for 37-year-old coach Rúben Amorim.

Highlights: Sporting CP 3-1 Dortmund
Highlights: Sporting CP 3-1 Dortmund

Coach: Rúben Amorim
The former Portugal midfielder masterminded Sporting's first Liga title in 19 years during his first full season as coach. The Lions set a league record for the longest unbeaten sequence in a single campaign – 32 matches unbowed – and dispatched Braga in the League Cup final.

Key player: Pedro Gonçalves
He had netted just seven career goals for Famalicão before joining Sporting in August 2020 but ended his first term in Lisbon as the league's top scorer with 23. The 23-year-old started this campaign in similar form after winning his first two Portugal caps in June.

Did you know?
Sporting had progressed from the group stage on only one of their eight previous attempts in the Champions League era.

Manchester City

UEFA ranking: 2
Group A: winners (W4 D0 L2 F18 A10)
Last season: runners-up (L 0-1 vs Chelsea)
European Cup best: runners-up (2020/21)

Campaign in ten words: Guardiola's free-flowing outfit have been mesmerising to watch at times.

UEFA.com Man. City reporter: City have arguably taken their game to another level this season. They came so close to that elusive first title last term and Josep Guardiola has raised the bar once more as he chases a first Champions League triumph since 2011. When on song, their football is peerless.

Watch Man. City's winner against Paris
Watch Man. City's winner against Paris

Coach: Josep Guardiola
One of the most decorated coaches in the game, the 51-year-old won this competition twice with Barcelona. He has scooped three league titles apiece at the helm of the Catalan club, Bayern and City.

Key player: Kevin De Bruyne
The 30-year-old schemer passed 250 appearances for the club last season and remains a talismanic figure in their midfield despite the riches around him. He has endured something of a stilted campaign but remains key and looks to be returning to his best.

Did you know?
Guardiola reached his eighth Champions League semi-final last season – the joint-most in the competition's history alongside José Mourinho.

Paris Saint-Germain (FRA) vs Real Madrid (ESP)

Paris Saint-Germain

UEFA ranking: 7
Group A: runners-up (W3 D2 L1 F13 A8)
Last season: semi-finals (L 1-4 agg vs Man. City)
European Cup best: runners-up (2019/20)

Campaign in ten words: Star-studded team with huge potential still seeking the right balance.

UEFA.com Paris reporter: Despite coming second in their group to Manchester City, Paris remain among the chief contenders for the trophy. The 2019/20 runners-up have everything required to go one better this term – not least attacking talent aplenty in Kylian Mbappé, Lionel Messi and Neymar – but they must improve their consistency in Europe and Mauricio Pochettino needs to find the best way to support his 'MNM' spearhead.

In the Zone: Paris' counterattack against Leipzig
In the Zone: Paris' counterattack against Leipzig

Coach: Mauricio Pochettino
The brains behind Tottenham's surprise run to the 2019 final, the Argentinian replaced Tuchel at the Paris helm in January 2020, some 20 years after signing for the club as a defender.

Key player: Kylian Mbappé
Competing for the limelight with Messi, Neymar and Ángel Di María, the France starlet has been the main source of goals for Paris in this season's tournament, providing devastating runs into the final third, assists and lethal finishes.

Did you know?
When Paris overcame Bayern in the 2020/21 quarter-finals, it was the first instance in Champions League history of the previous season's runners-up eliminating the holders in the knockout stage.

Real Madrid

UEFA ranking: 5
Group D: winners (W5 D0 L1 F14 A3)
Last season: semi-finals (L 1-3 agg vs Chelsea)
European Cup best: winners (1955/56, 1956/57, 1957/58, 1958/59, 1959/60, 1965/66, 1997/98, 1999/2000, 2001/02, 2013/14, 2015/16, 2016/17, 2017/18)

Campaign in ten words: Looking ominously back to their best after a shaky start.

UEFA.com Real Madrid reporter: Madrid's strong form on the road – three wins, nine goals, none conceded – underpinned their progress. With Karim Benzema and Vinícius Júnior delivering the goods, the Merengues could afford a surprise stumble at home to debutants Sheriff. Madrid are where they want to be, and from here they're always a threat.

Highlights: Sheriff 0-3 Real Madrid
Highlights: Sheriff 0-3 Real Madrid

Coach: Carlo Ancelotti
The manager who steered Madrid to 'La Décima' in 2014 returned last summer for a second stint in charge. He is one of just three coaches to have won the European Cup/Champions League on three occasions.

Key player: Karim Benzema
Many people wondered where Real Madrid’s goals would come from when Cristiano Ronaldo left in 2018, but the France forward has more than stepped up to the plate to become the club's talisman. Fittingly, he scored Madrid's 1,000th European Cup goal against Shakhtar earlier this campaign.

Did you know?
Madrid have never failed to make it through the group stage of the Champions League.

16 February & 8 March

Salzburg (AUT) vs Bayern (GER)

Salzburg

UEFA ranking: 22
Group G: runners-up (W3 D1 L2 F8 A6)
Last season: group stage (UEFA Europa League round of 32)
European Cup best: group stage (1994/95, 2019/20, 2020/21, 2021/22)

Campaign in ten words: Nerves jangled after a brilliant start, but potential is there.

UEFA.com Salzburg reporter: Salzburg looked to be cruising after taking seven points from their first three games, but faltered as they prepared to take the final step towards the knockouts. Results have not been quite as sparkling since November, but this exciting young team will be a force to be reckoned with once they regain their composure.

Highlights: Salzburg 3-1 Wolfsburg
Highlights: Salzburg 3-1 Wolfsburg

Coach: Matthias Jaissle
It was a considerable surprise when Salzburg announced that a 33-year-old former Hoffenheim defender, who had never coached a top-flight team, would be their new boss last summer. He made the move up after two years in command of their U18s.

Key player: Karim Adeyemi
The striker has big boots to fill but could be the next top-class forward to come off the Salzburg production line, after Patson Daka and Erling Haaland. The 20-year-old is quick, versatile and shows no mercy in front of goal. He has also worked his way into the senior Germany team.

One to watch: Luka Sučić
What the 19-year-old midfielder lacks in experience, he makes up for in quality. Already a central component in Salzburg's system, his success in the Champions League earned him a first cap for Croatia.

Did you know?
Salzburg have made it to the round of 16 for the first time in their history; they reached the final of the UEFA Cup in 1994, losing 2-0 on aggregate to Inter.

Bayern

UEFA ranking: 1
Group E: winners (W6 D0 L0 F22 A3)
Last season: quarter-finals (L on away goals vs Paris)
European Cup best: winners (1973/74, 1974/75, 1975/76, 2000/01, 2012/13, 2019/20)

Campaign in ten words: Scoring freely, hungry and deeply committed to title number seven.

UEFA.com Bayern reporter: Despite all their limitations through injuries and illness this season, it's been relatively smooth sailing results wise and Bayern will again be major contenders in the spring if they continue to build on this rhythm. The tactical ploys new coach Julian Nagelsmann is currently implementing should also become even more visible as the campaign progresses.

Lewandowski's best Champions League goals
Lewandowski's best Champions League goals

Coach: Julian Nagelsmann
The 34-year-old has been diligent as successor to Hansi Flick, overseeing some fine displays and a cruise through the group stage. In 2016, he became the youngest coach in Bundesliga history when he took the Hoffenheim reins aged 28, leading them into the Champions League by finishing fourth the following season. He continued to impress across two seasons at Leipzig prior to joining Bayern last summer.

Key player: Robert Lewandowski
The relentless Polish marksman hit new heights last term, scoring a record 41 German league goals as Bayern sealed a ninth straight championship. He has maintained that form this season with nine goals in six group fixtures and sits third on the list of all-time scorers in the Champions League. Won the FIFA Men's Player Award 2021 in January.

Did you know?
Bayern have extended their record unbeaten streak in Champions League away games to 21 matches.

Inter (ITA) vs Liverpool (ENG)

Inter

UEFA ranking: 24
Group D: runners-up (W3 D1 L2 F8 A5)
Last season: group stage
European Cup best: winners (1963/64, 1964/65, 2009/10)

Campaign in ten words: Strong defensively and creating plenty of opportunities but not clinical.

UEFA.com Inter reporter: Simone Inzaghi's Inter may be less solid than Antonio Conte's version, despite the same 3-5-2 system, but the Nerazzurri are certainly playing more attacking football compared with last season. They have missed an incredible number of chances, particularly against Real Madrid and Shakhtar. Should they become more clinical up front, they could go a long way.

Highlights: Inter 2-0 Shakhtar Donetsk
Highlights: Inter 2-0 Shakhtar Donetsk

Coach: Simone Inzaghi
A Serie A and three-time Coppa Italia winner as a player with Lazio, the 45-year-old also brought a domestic cup to Rome during his five seasons in charge. From a tactical viewpoint, he is another exponent of the 3-5-2, like his predecessor Conte.

Key player: Marcelo Brozović
The Croatian international has the perfect attitude in putting himself at the service of the team both defensively and going forward; indeed he often leads the 'distance covered' stats after a game. The key phases of play often go through him and he has the sort of mentality every coach loves. A real leader.

Did you know?
European champions in 2010, Inter have reached the knockout stage for the first time in a decade.

Liverpool

UEFA ranking: 3
Group B: winners (W6 D0 L0 F17 A6)
Last season: quarter-finals (L 1-3 agg vs Real Madrid)
European Cup best: winners (1976/77, 1977/78, 1980/81, 1983/84, 2004/05, 2018/19)

Campaign in ten words: A perfect group stage facilitated by an in-form attacking unit.

UEFA.com Liverpool reporter: The Reds have left their challengers for dust, storming to the Group B summit without dropping a point. It's not been plain sailing, though, as they have had to show some mettle to battle back against top-quality opposition in AC Milan and Atlético.

Coach: Jürgen Klopp
Liverpool boss since 2015, Klopp guided the Reds to continental glory in 2018/19 and to their first English title in 30 years the next season. A striker turned defender at Mainz, he lifted two Bundesliga titles with Dortmund before heading to Anfield.

Thiago's sensational Liverpool strike
Thiago's sensational Liverpool strike

Key player: Mohamed Salah
The Egypt forward has been the face of this Liverpool side since arriving from Roma in 2017. A star at Basel, he first landed in England with Chelsea in 2014, but has proved a major talent on Merseyside, his pace, intelligence and finishing helping him bag 32 Champions League goals for the club. He has seemingly gone up another notch this term.

Did you know?
Liverpool have been European champions six times – more than any other English team. That is as many titles as Bayern, with Milan and Real Madrid the only sides to have won more.

22 February & 16 March

Chelsea (ENG) vs LOSC Lille (FRA)

Chelsea

UEFA ranking: 4
Group H: runners-up (W4 D1 L1 F13 A4)
Last season: winners (W 1-0 vs Man. City)
European Cup best: winners (2011/12, 2020/21)

Campaign in ten words: Defensively outstanding with the attacking variety to challenge the best.

UEFA.com Chelsea reporter: This is some team. Everything Thomas Tuchel touches seems to turn to gold and his side have once again been a joy to watch. The Matchday 2 reverse in Turin aside, they look just as ruthlessly efficient as they were during last season's knockout phase. It will take something special to stop them.