The month of February is promising to be a bit special. The Champions League returns with the knockout stages pitting together Europe’s top teams. There will be derby matches, a two legged El Clásico cup semi-final and highly important Premier League fixtures as we head into the tail end of the season.
Here are 11 football fixtures in February you will not want to miss.
Barcelona vs Real Madrid (6/2 & 27/2)
Madrid currently sit eight points behind Barcelona following a disappointing La Liga campaign thus far this season. The last time these two sides met, Barca mauled Real Madrid at Camp Nou; a defeat which would see Julen Lopetegui lose his job.
Lionel Messi could return for La Blaugrana for the first leg at the Camp Nou on 6 February. The return leg takes place at the Santiago Bernabeu three weeks later on the 27 February.
The winners of the tie will play either Real Betis or Valencia in the final.
Atletico Madrid vs Real Madrid (9/2)
Real Madrid have two massive fixtures in the space of three days. After travelling to Barcelona for the Copa del Rey semi-final first leg, Los Blancos will visit city rivals Atletico. Former Real striker Alvaro Morata recently signed for rivals Atletico on loan from Chelsea, and could be in line for a start against his former employers.
Real’s form has picked up in recent weeks after their poor start to the season. Los Blancos have won their last five games and scored 16 goals to put them back in contention of a title race. Atletico currently sit two points above Real Madrid in second place.
The reverse fixture between the sides in November finished in a stalemate, but expect a much more enthralling encounter this time round as Los Blancos hit top form.
Manchester United vs PSG (12/2)
The first Champions League knockout stage match of the year promises to be a classic. Manchester United host French champions PSG at Old Trafford in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s first UCL game in charge of the Red Devils.
Manchester United have been in terrific form since the Norwegian took over, winning nine of their last 10 games. United finished second behind Juventus in their group, while PSG topped a group that featured Liverpool and Napoli to reach the round of 16.
While PSG were scoring for fun in Ligue 1, the champions suffered their first defeat of the season at the hands of Lyon this past week, and Neymar will miss for the match with an injury.
Borussia Dortmund vs Spurs (13/2)
Borussia Dortmund vs. Tottenham could be one of the most tightly contested games of the UCL round of 16. In their past four encounters, both sides have won two games between them. Tottenham took all glory in the group stage of the competition last season, beating a poor Dortmund side home and away.
This season however, Dortmund are rejuvenated, and sit atop Bundesliga, having soared under Lucien Favre since his appointment in the summer.
Manchester United vs Chelsea (18/2)
Manchester United have yet again been drawn against a fellow top six in the FA Cup this year. United beat Arsenal 3-1 at the Emirates in the previous round while Chelsea enjoyed a more comfortable 3-0 win over Sheffield Wednesday.
It is difficult to see where Solskjaer’s unbeaten run will end, but with a congested a February fixture list for Man United, that defeat could come sooner rather than later. Chelsea have reached the past two finals and fans will be expecting a third trip to Wembley this year. Chelsea beat Manchester United 1-0 in final last year, as Eden Hazard's first half penalty was the difference between the teams.
A FA Cup tie on a Monday night between two top teams; what more could you want?
Liverpool vs Bayern Munich (19/2)
Liverpool’s incredible form has somewhat tailed off in recent weeks, with the Reds having won two of their last five fixtures. Bayern may find this is the best time to play the Premier League leaders as the two go head to head in the UCL this month.
While Bayern continue to be cut adrift in the Bundesliga, success in the Champions League could secure Niko Kovac another season at the helm in Bavaria. Jürgen Klopp will be desperate to get back to a UCL final following heroics in the competition last year.
A tightly contested contest is expected for this one, and it should be a cracker.
Atletico Madrid vs Juventus (20/2)
Two European giants come together for this round of 16 tie in the Champions League. Atletico finished joint top with Dortmund, while Juventus topped their group ahead of Manchester United.
Cristiano Ronaldo has been deadly for Juventus this season and will no doubt come back to haunt former his former rivals Atletico when they meet later this month.
Manchester United vs Liverpool (24/2)
Manchester United's form under Solskjaer has been impeccable, due to Liverpool's recent dip in form, the Red Devils could be favourites for this one.
Liverpool have drawn their past two games 1-1 against both Leicester and West Ham and also lost Manchester City at the beginning of the year. The last time Liverpool and United met however, Klopp's men beat the Red Devils 3-1 at Anfield.
Manchester City vs Chelsea (24/2)
Manchester City and Chelsea will compete for the first trophy of the season in the Carabao Cup final on 24 February.
Pep Guardiola’s men will be looking to retain the trophy, having won it last season.
Manchester City beat Oxford United, Fulham, Leicester and Burton Albion to reach this year’s final.
Chelsea saw off Liverpool, Derby County, Bournemouth and Tottenham to reach the final. A cup final is always a great spectacle and a thrilling game is expected at the end of the month.
Chelsea vs Tottenham Hotspur (27/2)
The final game in an action packed month finishes with a bang.
The sides have already met in both the league and the EFL Cup this season. Spurs won 3-1 in the Premier League while Chelsea beat their rivals over two legs in the Carabao Cup semi-final. Tottenham are, however, sitting a comfortable seven points ahead of Chelsea at this moment in time.
By the end of February all could be different, but this fixture should still prove vital in who progresses to finish behind the inevitable top two teams.