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Real, Milan, Porto?

FCB primed for Champions League draw

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The draw for the Champions League Round of 16 takes place from 11.30 am CET on Thursday at UEFA headquarters in Nyon, Switzerland. As winners of Group F, Bayern comfortably qualified for the first knockout round and will be drawn to play one of the group runners-up. takes a closer look at the seven potential opponents.

The one team FCB cannot meet is Valencia, who came second to Munich in their group. However, a possible Spanish option would be the nation’s most successful club Real Madrid, who finished second in their section behind Borussia Dortmund. A clash with Jupp Heynckes’ former club would certainly be the most challenging draw of the lot.

Poor record against Milan

North London giants Arsenal could also face the Reds after coming second to Schalke in their group. Bayern have generally good memories of facing the Gunners: on the way to winning the competition in 2001, FCB drew 2-2 in the UK capital and won 1-0 at home in the second group stage, before going through to the quarter-finals in 2005 on a 3-2 aggregate after winning 3-1 at home and losing 0-1 away.

By contrast, FCB's record against AC Milan is a poor one. The Rossoneri, runners-up in Group C behind surprise package Malaga, have faced FCB in the Champions League three times in the last ten years. Munich failed to win any of the six matches, with two ending as draws and four in defeat.

No track record against Donetsk

FC Porto are old foes of the men from Munich, and are associated with a painful defeat in the 1987 European Cup final when the Portuguese side won 2-1. However, Bayern have faced the 2004 Champions League winners twice since then, progressing from the quarter-finals on both occasions. Porto qualified for the knockout stages this season as runners-up to Paris St Germain.

There was a surprise in Group E as top Ukrainian outfit Shakhtar Donetsk edged out holders Chelsea on the better head-to-head record and qualified for the last 16 behind Italian giants Juventus. If Donetsk are drawn to play FCB, it would be the first-ever meeting between the clubs.

Possible reunion with Altintop

That is not the case with the runners-up from Group G, Glasgow giants Celtic, who came second to Barcelona in their group while recording a famous victory over the Catalans on the way. The Hoops and Bayern previously crossed swords in 2003/04, with the Scots losing 2-1 in Munich before playing out a goalless draw at Celtic Park.

The Bavarians have also only played once in the past against Istanbul club Galatasaray, runners-up in Group H behind winners Manchester United. The previous meeting was a long time ago, a European Cup preliminary round clash in 1972/73. The clubs drew 1-1 in Istanbul but FCB triumphed 6-0 in the return. Former Bayern man Hamit Altintop joined the Turkish giants last summer.

As group winners, Bayern play the first leg of the Round of 16 tie away from home, with the decisive second leg at the Allianz Arena. The first leg matches are scheduled for 12/13 and 19/20 February 2013, with the returns on 6/7 and 12/13 March.