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Champions League Preview
Chicago Tribune, February 14th, 2007 3:32PM

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They might be fighting like siblings, but Luis Arroye of the Chicago Tribune believes Barcelona's players are once again playing like European Champions. Ronaldinho showed he's back to his best this weekend against Racing Santander, as did Portuguese midfielder Deco. Striker Javier Saviola has been on a goal-scoring tear since the beginning of the year, and fellow Argentine Leo Messi is finally back from injury. The Cameroonian Samuel Eto'o is also back in the rotation after a lengthy injury, though cooling relations with Coach Franck Rijkaard could limit his playing time. All in all, Arroye says Barca's good form lately has proven it's still the team to beat when the Champions League resumes next week.

Serie A's unstoppable Inter Milan, along with Manchester United and Chelsea look the most likely candidates to unseat last year's defending champ, while the winner of the intriguing tie between French champ Lyon and Italy No. 2 Roma could prove to be a dark horse. Bayern Munich vs. Real Madrid also looks like an interesting series, although neither team has yet shown the kind of consistency this season needed to make it through to the end of the competition's second phase. Unfortunately for U.S. fans, the only American participation in the Champions League second phase is through Liverpool's new owners George Gillett and Tom Hicks and Man United's Malcolm Glazer and family. Read the original story...


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