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UEFA Champions League preview: Arsenal, Atletico Madrid trail Monaco, Leverkusen


Arsenal FC

AFP/Getty Images

With four quarterfinals places already booked in this year’s UEFA Champions League, there’s still four more spots up for grabs. They’ll be on the line this Tuesday and Wednesday, as the remaining round-of-16 ties are settled in Spain, France and Germany.

[ MORE: UCL schedule | Scoreboard | Stats ]

On Tuesday, one of two remaining Premier League sides still in the competition, Arsenal, aim to overcome a 3-1 deficit to Ligue 1 side Monaco following the first leg in London. With Monaco’s three away goals in the bag, Arsene Wenger’s side can advance with no fewer than three goals of their own, provided they keep a clean sheet at the Stade Louis II.

Wenger said on Monday that neither Tomas Rosicky (illness) nor Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain (hamstring) travelled with the team, while defender Gabriel Paulista is fit and available after missing the last two games with a hamstring injury. Also still out with long-term injuries are midfielders Mikel Arteta and Jack Wilshere and defender Mathieu Debuchy.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s Champions League coverage ]

Meanwhile in the Spanish capital, Diego Simeone’s Atletico Madrid have a 1-0 deficit to Bundesliga side Bayer Leverkusen to overcome in order to reach the quarterfinals as they aim to return to the final for a second-straight season. Making the task more difficult, Los Rojiblancos will be without midfielder Tiago (four goals, three assists in league play) following the Portuguese’s sending-off in the first leg.

Atletico are having a rough time at the moment, as they’re winless in four games in all competitions, including three-straight league draws (Sevilla, Valencia and Espanyol) in which they scored just a single goal combined.

On the other side, Leverkusen haven’t tasted defeat in over a month (six games unbeaten in all competitions) after pouring in four goals against Stuttgart over the weekend and three against Paderborn the week before. Roger Schmidt’s side also hasn’t conceded a goal in five games, outscoring their opponents a combined 11-0 during that span.

Stay tuned to PST for full coverage of Tuesday’s UCL action, including pre-game, halftime and post-game coverage.

Follow @AndyEdMLS