It may be a surprise to some while others have come to expect it, but there is a valid suspicion that the draw for the 2013/14 Champions League quarter-finals was fixed by UEFA.

Friday’s pairings which produced PSG vs Chelsea as the closest to an evenly matched showdown appears to have been orchestrated by European football’s governing body through betting odds.

Indeed, the four fixtures are believed to have been organized through a ‘top eight’ seeding similar to the format used in NBA playoffs in basketball. The issue here though is that the order of the top eight teams in this seeding used in the quarter-final draw is not put together by any official merit or UEFA’s own coefficients – statistics used for ranking teams ahead of competitions.

What this ‘top eight’ seeding used on Friday actually consists of is an order of teams – from first to eighth – in terms of who are favourites to win the Champions League according to betting odds.

Here was betting company Paddy Power’s ranking of the Champions League favourites after the completion of the round of 16 matches on Wednesday.

fixed ucl bettings

As you can see, defending champions Bayern Munich are at the summit of favourites to win the competition while David Moyes’ beleaguered Manchester United were rock-bottom on the list.

So how did UEFA pair up the teams to face each other?

It would be 1st (Bayern) vs 8th (United), 2nd (Madrid) vs 7th (Dortmund), 3rd (Barcelona) vs 6th (Atletico) and 4th (PSG) vs 5th (Chelsea) – an opposite matching formula.

Interestingly, this is not UEFA’s debut in producing hints of a fixed draw after last year’s round of 16 featured the SAME fixtures in the actual draw as it did in the rehearsal draw.

Such a shame.

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