Ferguson relishes Jose battle

Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson says he cannot wait to take on Jose Mourinho's Real Madrid in their Champions League last 16 showdown.

Last Updated: 20/12/12 at 17:04 Post Comment

Sir Alex and Jose Mourinho: Pitted against each other in Europe

Sir Alex and Jose Mourinho: Pitted against each other in Europe

Ferguson will renew his old rivalry with Mourinho, and Cristiano Ronaldo will return to Old Trafford to face his former team-mates.

"It's the tie of the round," Ferguson told United's official website. "It's a great opportunity for our fans to see Cristiano again and also for me to meet up with Jose again - I'll need to order some good wine!"

United defender Rio Ferdinand played in the 2003 match against Real, and he tweeted: "Oh yes, Madrid!! What a great couple a games that'll be!! @Cristiano see u soon bro!!"

Real Madrid director Emilio Butragueno is also excited by the draw.

"I think the fans will be very very happy with the tie, it's very attractive. It's going to be a thrilling experience for everybody," he told Sky Sports.

"Manchester United are a great team and a great organisation, one of the most prestigious in the world. So we are very happy. We have a very good relationship with them.

"We know it is going to be difficult, a very even tie. They are a very strong team with great leadership - Sir Alex Ferguson has been there for 25 years. He's a fantastic manager and he knows how to make the most out of his players.

"So we know it's going to be very, very difficult. But we are Real Madrid - we will do our best and rise to the occasion."

Real's Ronaldo will face his former team and Butragueno said: "It's going to be a special game for him. He's a great professional and he will do his best for Real Madrid. So yes, going back there, it will be very special for him.

"From the players' perspective, they will think 'I want to show what I'm made of'. It is going to be important for us to get our injured players back and I hope we will be at our best for the first leg. In football, you never know."

Manchester United club secretary John Alexander said the meeting of the two European aristocrats is the pick of the ties.

"It is the tie that everybody wanted to see, but nobody wanted to see - they wanted to save it for later in the competition," he said.

"Out of several stand-out ties, I think this is the one, with the traditions of the two clubs in this competition and their past history.

"If history has anything in our favour, our one victory against Real Madrid in this competition was in the year we won the final at Wembley."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

W

e have the personnel. The trick is keeping them fit. Carrick and Blind have missed large chunks of the season, while the defence has been one muddled mess of intermittent stooges, all coming and going at various intervals thus far. We may be just short of title winning quality, but we're half way through. An injury crisis to either of the top two could change things. Optimistic, yes, but not unrealistic.

HarryBoulton
One Point And One Conclusion For United

P

arish is the man to blame for this shambles. Pulis must be chuckling into his left over turkey sandwich. I pray this doesn't mean the Neil Warnock media machine will kick in now and he'll be back on the telly box.

magicfuller
Warnock sacked by Palace

W

e almost found a new way to lose, just when I thought it was getting boring Giroud does that. Although Arsenal are deservedly called 'soft' the entire midfield is out injured. Still must admit MU are managing to win despite a similar raft of absentees. Think the Gunners have good players but poorly coached.

gettalong
Wenger: Giroud deserved red

Footer 365

Premier League: Tony Popovic would be free to leave current club for Crystal Palace job

Western Sydney Wanderers chairman Paul Lederer will not stand in Tony Popovic's way if Crystal Palace approach him.

Sky sources: Alan Irvine will be in charge for West Brom's trip to West Ham on New Year's Day

A senior West Brom source has told Sky Sports News HQ that Alan Irvine will be in charge for the game against West Ham.

Barclays Premier League: Newcastle 'disappointed' over Pardew link to Palace

Speculation continues to surround Alan Pardew who has been tipped to become the new boss of managerless Crystal Palace.

Mail Box

What's Happened To Everton And Martinez?

There aren't many people still talking about how the Spaniard is better than David Moyes. Plus, thoughts on Jose Mourinho's moaning and Spurs at least being very fit...

Van Gaal's Half-Term Report Card...

One Man United fan isn't happy with the rate the team is progressing under Louis van Gaal, while the mailbox also wishes Liverpool fans a Merry Mid-Table Christmas...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property