Man Utd to face Marseille in Champions League

Manchester United will face Marseille of France in the last 16 of the Champions League.

Last Updated: Dec 18, 2010, 00:12 AM IST

Nyon: English Premier League rivals Manchester United and Chelsea will face Marseille of France and Danish champions Copenhagen respectively in the last 16 of the Champions League following Friday`s draw at UEFA headquarters.

Marseille president Jean-Claude Dassier said he was relishing the tie.

"It will be a very beautiful tie because Manchester, like Real Madrid, is a European legend," he said. "It`s not a bad draw, I`m not dissatisfied. We had to avoid Barcelona and even Real Madrid."

Arsenal face a tough task against Spanish giants Barcelona, who knocked the Gunners out at the quarter-final stage last season, when Lionel Messi scored all four goals in a 4-1 second leg demolition of the English club at the Nou Camp.

The teams also met in the 2006 Champions League final where Barcelona came from behind to win 2-1 at the Stade de France.

English newcomers Tottenham, who pipped Inter Milan to first place in Group A, travel to AC Milan as AS Roma host Shakthar Donetsk of Ukraine.
Spurs boss Harry Redknapp said his side would relish the prospect of a return to the San Siro to face AC Milan after playing Inter Milan there during the group phase.

"It will be a great game. I would have taken AC Milan before the draw. They are leading the league in Italy but it has the makings of a great game over two legs. I`m looking forward to it," Redknapp said.

"A tough draw but it will be a great game. That`s what you want. Great games."

Holders Inter Milan will play Bayern Munich in a rematch of last season`s final, which saw the Italians defeat the German side 2-0 in Madrid with a brace from Argentine striker Diego Milito.

Bayern Munich sporting director Christian Nerlinger believes his side now have the ideal opportunity to finally bury the heartache of their defeat last May.
"We still dwell a little on the lost final in Madrid and now we have the opportunity with these two new matches against Inter to put things right," said Nerlinger.

"It`s going to be difficult, but it couldn`t be more interesting for us."

Bayern president Karl-Heinz Rummenigge added: "Inter is an extremely difficult draw, without a doubt the most difficult we could have, but after last May`s defeat we have the chance to take our revenge."

The teams also met in the 2006 Champions League final where Barcelona came from behind to win 2-1 at the Stade de France.

Nine-time winners Real Madrid are also set for a rematch with French club Lyon who knocked them out of the competition in a huge upset at the same stage last year and will be bolstered by former Lyon player Karim Benzema.

Bureau Report