Old Trafford return for Ronaldo

Real Madrid drew Man United in the Champions League last 16, while Arsenal face Bayern Munich and Celtic meet Juventus.

Last Updated: 20/12/12 at 16:55 Post Comment

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Details of the draw for the last 16 of the Champions League.

Cristiano Ronaldo will face Manchester United for the first time since he left Old Trafford after Real Madrid were drawn against his old side in the last 16 of the Champions League.

The tie will also pit Jose Mourinho against Sir Alex Ferguson in the most mouthwatering tie of the first knock-out round of Europe's top club competition.

Ferguson joked he will now have to order some fine wine.

The two managers had a tradition of sharing a glass of red after their teams' encounters in the Premier League - though Ferguson described the first wine Mourinho ever provided him as being "like paintstripper".

Mourinho made amends with a £300 bottle of Portuguese red the next time around, and the last-16 match in the Champions League should be as mouthwatering as the wine.

Ferguson told the club's official website: "Well, it's the tie of the round. 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 welcomed the draw on Twitter saying: "Oh yes, Madrid!! What a great couple a games that'll be!! #Cristiano see u soon bro!!"

Emilio Butragueno, Real Madrid's director of institutional relations, said it would be a special match for Ronaldo - and for the two managers.

He said on www.uefa.com: "I am sure it will be a special game for him (Ronaldo). He's a great professional. I'm sure he's going to do his best to help us qualify. It's going to very, very special for him.

"It will be a thrilling experience for everyone. Manchester United are not only a great team but a great organisation known around the world.

"But we know it's going to be tough, Sir Alex Ferguson has been there over 25 years and he's a fantastic manager - he knows how to get the best out of his players and they have top players, but we are Real Madrid and we will try our best.

"I know the coaches have a great relationship. We are very happy with him [Mourinho] and I hope he's going to lead the team to the Champions League to make our fans feel proud of the team."

Barcelona will take on familiar foes AC Milan with the first leg at the San Siro.

Their most recent encounter was in the quarter-finals last season, when Barca prevailed 3-1 on aggregate with Lionel Messi scoring twice in the second leg.

AC Milan sporting director Umberto Gandini told www.uefa.com: "Last season we faced them twice (the group stage and quarter-finals), this time only once fortunately. We are now used to playing in Catalonia.

"We are improving and I'm sure we will continue to do so until February.

"We face a perfect machine, even if they had more problems than usual this season in the group stage. Let's just hope we will qualify this time around.

"This is the highest hurdle we could face but if we manage to pass it we can go all the way."

Barca coach Tito Vilanova was having cancer treatment on his parotid gland on Friday before undergoing six weeks of chemotherapy.

Gandini said in support: "We are all very close to Tito Vilanova and his family and we wish him all the best for his surgery.

"We hope he will be on the bench against us."

German champions Borussia Dortmund face a tricky clash with Shakhtar Donetsk while local rivals Schalke take on Galatasaray.

Big-spending Ligue 1 outfit Paris St Germain will fancy their chances of beating Valencia, whose form has been patchy this season, and Malaga, who are performing better in the Primera Division, meet Portuguese champions Porto.

Bayern Munich take on Arsenal while Celtic meet Italian champions Juventus.

Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge said: "This is a draw that we can be happy with. We know Arsenal well, but we must not underestimate them.

"It's important that we try to get a good result in London and get a goal to send out a signal.

"We can make it - we will go into it as favourites."

Celtic boss Neil Lennon called his side's draw against Juve "a beauty" but very tough.

Lennon told Sky Sports News: "Well in terms of glamour it's a beauty. Juventus are one of the great traditional European teams. They're current Italian champions and finished the group stage very strongly.

"So in terms of glamour it's great, in terms of qualification it is going to be very tough, but it could have been any of the other teams and it would have been just as tough."

United will play the first leg at the Bernabeu on February 13 with the return at Old Trafford on March 5.

Arsenal will play a week later with the first leg at the Emirates Stadium on February 19 and the second at the Allianz Arena in Munich on March 13.

Celtic will take on Juventus at Celtic Park on February 12, with the return leg in Turin on March 6.


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t's why Mourinho is so successful. He gives players a specific, limited set of functions to perform. They are but a cog in a machine. Do no more, do no less. I assume he learnt it from LvG :)

red_devil83
Fellaini Has Politely Become Undroppable

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really hope that someone in the mainstream media spots that the Bayern manager played for and managed Barcelona quite well, and thinks to mention it in the build up. That would be really interesting.

megabrow (cufc)
Barcelona to face Bayern

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our gob says one thing, Brendan, the results say something else.

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