Each Champions League Team’s Most Likely Last 16 Opponent

Each Champions League Team's Most Likely Last 16 Opponent

The Champions League group stages concluded on Wednesday evening with all 16 teams for the 2020/21 knockout stages now confirmed.

The draw for the last 16 takes place on Monday 14 December, with the first legs scheduled for the last two weeks of February, and the second legs to take place during the mid March.

All teams in the draw are seeded or unseeded, depending on whether they qualified as group winners or runners-up. In addition, clubs from the same country cannot be drawn against one another in the last 16, nor can teams who faced each other in the groups.

Eminga.github.io has run the numbers on the options to work out the exact probability of each side drawing one another in the last 16, allowing us to take a look at who every Champions League team’s statistically most likely last 16 opponents are!

Ajax Amsterdam v Atalanta BC: Group D - UEFA Champions League
Atalanta qualified with victory over Ajax 

Real Madrid: 23.7%

Last season’s surprise package made slightly easier work of the group stages this time around, qualifying for the last 16 as group runners-up.

The only top seeded sides Atalanta cannot be drawn against in the last 16 are Group D winners Liverpool and fellow Serie A side Juventus. Madrid are the side they have the greatest probability of facing, while Bayern are the second most likely with a 19.22% probability.

With a probability of 12.40%, Manchester City are the side Atalanta are least likely to draw.

FBL-ESP-LIGA-ATLETICO-VALLADOLID
Atletico qualified as group runners up 

Borussia Dortmund: 22.80%

Atletico Madrid qualified as runners up in Group A, but did succeed in halting Bayern Munich’s record breaking Champions League winning streak during the group stages.

It’s just Bayern and rivals Real Madrid that Atletico cannot draw in the last 16, while Dortmund are their most likely opponent.

With a probability of 19.71%, Juventus are their second most likely opponent, while Manchester City are their least likely with a probability of 13.98%

Antoine Griezmann, Lionel Messi, Martin Braithwaite
Barcelona qualified in second place 

Bayern Munich: 22.23 %

Barcelona suffered a 3-0 defeat to Juventus in their final group game to throw away their 100% record in this season’s competition and top spot in the group, qualifying as runners-up.

Juventus and rivals Real Madrid are the only top seeded sides the 2015 Champions League winners cannot face, with a repeat of (gulp) last season’s infamous quarter final clash with reigning champions Bayern Munich marginally the most likely outcome.

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Fellow Bundesliga side Dortmund have the second highest probability for Barcelona at 21.55%, while Manchester City are the lowest at 13.68%

Kingsley Coman
Bayern are the reigning Champions League champions 

Barcelona: 22.23%

The reigning champions of Europe qualified for the knockout stages emphatically, winning five from six and scoring more goals than any other side.

Bayern cannot draw compatriots RB Leipzig and Borussia Monchengladbach or fellow Group A outfit Atletico Madrid, and a rematch against Barcelona – the side they beat 8-2 en route to the 2020 Champions League glory – is their most likely tie.

With a probability of 21.17%, Sevilla crash in at second most likely, while Porto are their least likely opponents with a probability of 16.42%

Erling Haaland
Dortmund qualified as group winners 

Atletico Madrid: 22.80%

Dortmund progressed to the last 16 as group winners following four wins from their six group stage fixtures.

The Bundesliga side cannot face fellow German outfits RB Leipzig or Borussia Monchengladbach or Lazio, and Atletico Madrid are the side that they have the greatest probability of drawing.

They also have a 21.55% chance of drawing Barcelona, while with a probability of 16.18%, Porto are the side Dortmund are least likely to play.

Real Madrid v Borussia Moenchengladbach: Group B - UEFA Champions League
Gladbach qualified despite defeat on match day six 

Juventus: 25.58%

Goal-happy Gladbach surrendered top spot in the group after a 2-0 defeat to Real Madrid in match day six, but squeezed into the last 16 thanks to results elsewhere.

The Bundesliga side cannot draw Real Madrid, Dortmund or Bayern in the last 16, and Juventus are their most likely opponents.

With a probability of 19.38%, PSG are their second most likely opponents, while Manchester City are least likely with a probability of 18.04%.

Kurt Zouma, Ben Chilwell, Olivier Giroud, Thiago Silva, Christian Pulisic
Chelsea topped their group 

Borussia Monchengladbach: 18.62%

Chelsea progressed to the last 16 as group winners and are yet to taste defeat in this season’s competition.

With all the fellow Premier League teams who qualified for the knockout stages also topping their group, the only second seed side they cannot face is Sevilla.

Borussia Monchengladbach are their most likely opponents, followed by RB Leipzig at 16.08%. The Blues have just a 10.67% probability of facing Porto.

Danilo, Wojciech Szczesny
Juventus topped their group on the final match day 

Borussia Monchengladbach: 25.58%

Juventus snatched top spot in the group on match day six with a 3-0 win over Barcelona.

The Italian champions are Gladbach’s most likely opponents in the last 16 – and they have returned the favour.

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Atalanta, Lazio and Barcelona are the three sides Juventus cannot draw. Their second most likely opponents are Leipzig (21.72%), while Porto are the least likely with a probability of 14.68%.

SS Lazio v Club Brugge KV: Group F - UEFA Champions League
Lazio qualified as runners up 

Real Madrid: 25.36%

Lazio qualified for the Champions League knockout stages for the first time in 21 years, finishing as group runners up to Dortmund.

Dortmund and Juventus are the two sides Lazio cannot face in the last 16, and 13-time European champions Real are their most likely last 16 opponent.

Reigning champions Bayern crash in at second place with a 20.95% probability, while Manchester City are their least likely opponents with a probability of 13.07%

Mohamed Salah
Liverpool topped their qualification group 

Borussia Monchengladbach: 18.38%

The 2019 champions of Europe progressed to the last 16 as group winners with four wins from six.

Atalanta are the only second seeded side Liverpool cannot face due to Chelsea and Manchester City topping their groups, while Gladbach are the most likely opponents.

They have a 15.99% probability of drawing Leipzig, while Porto are their least likely opponents with a probability of 10.63%

Sergio Aguero, Nathan Ake, Kyle Walker, Phil Foden, Raheem Sterling
City are unbeaten in this season’s competition 

Borussia Monchengladbach: 18.04%

City made light work of their group, qualifying as group winners with five wins from six – the joint best record in the competition.

Like their fellow Premier League sides, City’s most likely last 16 opponents are Gladbach and their second most likely are Leipzig, with a probability of 15.74%

The Citizens least likely last 16 opponents are Atalanta – who they faced in the group stages of last season’s competition – with a probability of 12.40.

Paris Saint Germain v Istanbul Basaksehir - UEFA Champions League
PSG narrowly topped their group | Xavier Laine/Getty Images

Borussia Monchengladbach: 19.38%

Last season’s beaten finalists narrowly topped their thoroughly entertaining group on goal difference to qualify for the last 16.

As the last French side standing, Group H runners up Leipzig are the only side PSG cannot face in the last 16. They are one of a number of sides for whom Gladbach are their most likely opponents.

Atletico have the second highest probability (14.81%) and Porto the lowest (10.95%).

FBL-EUR-C1-OLYMPIAKOS-PORTO
Porto qualified as group runners up 

Real Madrid: 20.47%

Porto qualified for the last 16 as group runners up, with their group stage campaign best remembered for a couple of feisty encounters against Manchester City.

As the final representatives of Portugal left in the competition, City are the only side Porto cannot draw in the last 16.

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Real crash in with the highest probability, followed by Bayern (16.42%), while with a probability of 10.63%, Liverpool are their least likely opponents.

Yussuf PoulsenAmadou HaidaraJustin KluivertWilli Orban
RB Leipzig qualified on match day six 

Real Madrid: 30.47%

Last season’s beaten semi finalists booked their place in the last 16 with victory over Manchester United in the final group game to progress as runners up.

The Bundesliga side cannot face Dortmund, Bayern or PSG, and they have a 30.47% chance of facing Real Madrid – the highest probability of any last 16 draw.

Leipzig have a 21.72% chance of facing Juventus, and a 15.74% chance of drawing Manchester City.

Karim Benzema, Luka Modric
Real left it until match day six to secure qualification 

RB Leipzig: 30.47%

The 13-time European champions avoiding a scare to progress as group winners – when they could have been eliminated at the group stages for the first time in their history going into their final group game.

There are four teams Real cannot face in the last 16 – more than any other side – Atletico, Barcelona, Sevilla and Gladbach.

Leipzig are their most likely opponents, followed by Lazio with a probability of 25.36%, while Porto are their least likely opponents (20.47%).

Youssef En-Nesyri
Sevilla qualified as runners up 

Bayern Munich: 21.17%

The Europa League stalwarts are in somewhat unfamiliar territory having booked their place in the Champions League last 16 as group runners up.

Chelsea and Real Madrid are the only two sides Sevilla cannot draw in the last 16, and Bayern are their most likely opponent, followed by fellow Bundesliga outfit Dortmund with a 20.40% probability.

As is the case with a number of teams, Manchester City are their least likely opponent with a probability of 13.08%.

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