Spanish fans vote Arsenal trickier Champions League opponents than Manchester City

Fans of Champions League trio Atletico Madrid, Barcelona and Real Madrid have voted on their preferred last-16 opponents.

Manchester City have emerged as preferred Champions League opponents ahead of Arsenal in an online poll conducted by fans of La Liga trio Real Madrid, Barcelona and Atletico Madrid.

Following the final round of group matches, the last 16 Champions League teams eagerly await Monday’s draw to learn who they will face in the knockout stages.

La Liga giants Barca, reigning holders Real Madrid and last year’s finalists Atletico Madrid all topped their respective groups, ensuring a supposedly less daunting task in the first knockout round.

The Gunners and fellow Premier League outfit City, however, finished as runners-up and will now likely face a fellow European heavyweight for a place in the quarter-finals.

As teams from the same country can’t be drawn together, the probability of a Spain vs England match-up is looking rather high – similar to last season as the Catalans defeated the Citizens 4-1 on aggregate.

In a poll conducted by Marca, fans of the Spanish trio have voted for their preferred opponents and in a rather shocking conclusion Manuel Pellegrini’s men have been chosen among the favourable opponents.

For Atletico Madrid, Basel came out in top spot with 34.6%, Manchester City in 2nd with 18.4% and Arsenal in fifth with 7.7%.

Supporters of both Real Madrid and Barcelona likewise opted for a favourable tie against Liverpool’s adversary Basel, with the Citizens again coming out in second spot and the Gunners lower down.

It remains to be seen whether City’s poor display in last year’s loss to the Catalans has made fans believe it’s an easier tie, or whether their stuttering European campaign has created a number of doubters.

Either way, Arsene Wenger’s men will be hopeful of avoiding a trip to Spain and ideally fellow Iberian Peninsula outfit Porto represent a much more favourable clash.

Register for ARSENAL team updates

Register for MANCHESTER CITY team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch