UEFA president Michel Platini will be choking on his coffee and croissants on Thursday morning when all four English teams have made it through to the Champions League quarter-finals.
Platini has a well-documented disliking of all things English and has voiced his displeasue at England and the Premier League on numerous occasions, suggesting quotas on foreign imports and after England’s dismise at Euro 2008, he barked: “When you lose with the national team, that is the soul of your football losing.”
Still the fact is Manchester United are the Champions League holders and three Premier League sides have made the semi-finals of Europe’s premier club competition for the last two seasons.
And this time around the Premier League’s big four are all well-placed in their second-round matches and Manchester United, Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal are all expected to make the last eight.
It won’t be a pretty sight for Platini, who along with French president Nicolas Sarkozy is planning to halt the way English clubs spend beyond their ‘natural resources’.
But what are the odds on another all English final?
Chelsea and Manchester United battled it out in Moscow last May and today’s latest odds quote an all-English final as short as 4.3 – an idication of England’s strength in the competition. And if you’re certain of another English winner, but not sure which one of the big four will go all the way then take the football odds of 2.06 about any of the English four winning the trophy.
There’s not much value, but just think of Platini’s face when he has to hand the trophy over in the Stadio Olimpico in May.
By Phil Tomlinson
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