Rio Ferdinand predicts Champions League winner ahead of semi-finals

Rio Ferdinand has predicted who will win the Champions League as Chelsea and Manchester City gear up for their semi-finals this week.

Thomas Tuchel's side are away to Real Madrid on Tuesday night, while Pep Guardiola's City travel to face Paris-Saint Germain on Wednesday in the opening legs of the last-four clashes.

But Ferdinand doesn't think there will be an all-Premier League final in Istanbul on May 29 – as he predicted PSG will win this year's competition.

The former Manchester United defender believes Mauricio Pochettino's side can go one better than last season after Kylian Mbappe, Neymar and Co lost to Bayern Munich in the final.

"I think Paris Saint-Germain will win it,’ he predicted on his Rio Ferdinand Presents FIVE YouTube channel.

"They have the experience of last season, two strikers, the business end of the season they know what it’s about now.

"They’ve been here together, they’re not fazed and I think they’ll have the experience. Pochettino comes up smelling of roses after a turbulent couple of years."

PSG are currently trailing leaders Lille in Ligue 1, but Ferdinand believes breaking their Pochettino duck is the big prize for the French club this season after Pochettino replaced Tuchel in the Parc des Princes hotseat in January.

"I don’t think they’ll care [if he doesn’t win the league]. If he wins the Champions League then he’s outdone everyone because that’s what they are here for.

"Don’t forget, he’s only come in halfway through the season. His fingerprints ain’t all over that league."

Ferdinand believes Pochettino will acquire legendary status at PSG if he wins the Champions League – although he admitted he could be wrong.

"He might get treated like Roberto Di Matteo: win the Champions League and then gets told to do one," Ferdinand said. "You never know, we’ll see.

"But my guess is that if he wins the Champions League they’re giving him a statue outside that place almost."

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