Champions League

Michael Owen reveals his prediction for Atletico Madrid v Man United

Michael Owen looks ahead to Man United's trip to face Atletico Madrid in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie

Michael Owen
Liverpool FC legend Michael Owen (Photo: BT Sport)

Michael Owen is backing Atletico Madrid to make home advantage count when they host Manchester United in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie on Wednesday night.

The Red Devils head into the clash on the back of their impressive 4-2 victory over Leeds United on Sunday, with Ralf Rangnick’s side held off a second-half fightback from the Whites to claim back to back wins in the Premier League.

With a place in the top four far from guaranteed for the Red Devils this season, Manchester United will be looking to progress in the Champions League as they eye their first triumph in the competition since 2008.

Atletico and Manchester United are now set to meet for the first time in more than 30 years in the first leg of their last 16 clash.

The Spanish side ended the Red Devils’ defence of the European Cup Winners’ Cup in the sides’ only previous tie – in the 1991-92 second round.

Manchester United booked their spot in the last 16 after having won their group, bouncing back from a shock defeat by Young Boys at the start of the group-stage campaign.

Atletico lost home and away to Liverpool FC in this season’s group stage, making it four successive losses against English clubs.

However, former Liverpool FC star Owen feels that the Spanish side will have too much for the Red Devils on Wednesday night and he is backing them to claim the victory.

Writing in his column for BetVictor, Owen said: “This is an interesting one.

“Atletico have had a strange season and have underperformed. Defensively, they’ve had lots of issues, which is unheard of for a Diego Simeone side. I would never rule them out in these big games though, particularly at home, and I know Simeone will have his side really up for this one.

“As for United, they got the win at Leeds at the weekend but again, there’s issues at the back. In these high-intensity matches, are United physically good enough against the top sides? I have my doubts.

“I can see Atletico edging this, and I wouldn’t be shocked if Luis Suarez got a goal. I don’t think there will be much between these two in both games, but I can see Atletico taking a narrow lead to Manchester.”

Manchester United take on Watford in the Premier league at Old Trafford on Saturday.

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