Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySoccer World DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America ClassifiedsGame Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
Manchester United-Chelsea, the Moscow final
by Paul Kennedy, May 21st, 2008 7AM

MOST READ

MOST COMMENTED

[UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE] Manchester United and Chelsea meet Wednesday in Moscow in the first all-English final of the UEFA Champions League. Clarence Seedorf, the only player who has won the Champions League title with three different clubs (Ajax, Real Madrid and AC Milan), will be part of the broadcast team on both ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes during the game (kickoff: 2:30 pm ET). For a look at some of the key storylines ...

Probable Lineups
Man. United
Van der Sar (Netherlands)
Brown
Vidic (Serbia)
Ferdinand
Evra (France)
Hargreaves
Scholes
Carrick
Park Ji-Sung (South Korea)
Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal)
Rooney
Chelsea
Cech (Czech Rep.)
Essien (Ghana)
Terry
Ricardo Carvalho (Portugal)
A.Cole
Makelele (France)
Lampard
Ballack (Germany)
J. Cole
Malouda (France)
Drogba (Ivory Coast)

Cristiano Ronaldo and friends
Much has been written about Cristiano Ronaldo, but he is just one of three outstanding forwards Manager Sir Alex Ferguson has at his disposal.

Few teams in recent years can match the 1-2-3 punch of Cristiano Ronaldo, Wayne Rooney and Carlos Tevez.

Ferguson tried to take some of the pressure off Cristiano Ronaldo and Rooney by singling out Tevez as a potential match-winner.

"They are young, first of all," Ferguson said of Ronaldo and Rooney. "They have big futures ahead of them in terms of their ability, temperament and nerve, and their courage to play. It's a big stage for them tomorrow and a big challenge for them but it's a challenge for every one of the players."

As for the Argentine Tevez, who is on loan from West Ham United, "Tevez has been a fantastic player for us. It amazes me that a man can have so much energy in a game. The most important facet is his ability to score important goals."

Blues' trophy search
At one point, Chelsea was battling for four titles. The Blues' last hope is the Champions League. They lost to Tottenham in the League Cup final and were surprised by Barnsley in the FA Cup quarterfinals.

Chelsea came close in the EPL but was edged out by United on the final day of the season.

German Michael Ballack, whose two goals gave Chelsea a 2-1 victory that pulled it even on the next-to-last day of the season, says Chelsea raised its game after the 1-0 loss at Barnsley.

"What happened at Barnsley showed all of us the very fine line between being out and winning the titles we want," the German said. "It was a signal to all of us. We were not used to that Chelsea is not a team that is used to ending the season with nothing. But at that point we were very close to finishing with nothing at all. That was the catalyst when we sat down together."

Chelsea's health issues
Chelsea captain John Terry will play with a special support after he suffered a partial dislocation of his shoulder in Chelsea's final league game on May 11.

Chelsea left back Ashley Cole suffered an ankle injury in training when he went down under a sliding challenge from teammate Claude Makelele during a game of one-touch football. Cole hobbled off the field, but he is expected to start.

Cole's backup is fellow England left back Wayne Bridge.

Luzhniki field problems
The original grass surface installed in Moscow's Luzhniki Stadium, site of Wednesday's final, would have been a "catastrophe," according to its groundskeeper, Matthew Frost, but he added that he was "totally disappointed" with the replacement turf.

Manchester United's Ferguson tried to avoid blasting the surface, saying he had no concerns for the surface, but he gave it faint praise, saying it would not be any worse than the surface at United's Old Trafford home in mid-winter.

"I'm totally disappointed with the whole project and what we're presenting for the final," Frost told BBC radio. "It's acceptable but it's a big personal disappointment for me and the project as a whole because things haven't gone very well from the start. That's Russia, I'm afraid. It's not a perfect world."



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
Seven NASL players in World Cup qualifying    
Seven NASL players have joined their national teams for World Cup qualifiers and two are off ...
Report: Frisco favorite for Hall of Fame site    
The late Lamar Hunt settled on Frisco, Texas, as the home for his MLS team, FC ...
MLS's new gold standard    
Heading into the final two months of the MLS regular season, D.C. United leads the Eastern ...
Giovinco out of Italy's Euro 2016 qualifiers    
Toronto FC forward Sebastian Giovinco's return to the Italian national team after an absence of almost ...
What They're Saying: Mesut Ozil    
"Basti showed the entire world what kind of a leader he is at the World Cup. ...
Spector recalled for first time in 18 months    
Short on outside backs, U.S. national team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann has called veteran defender Jonathan ...
What They're Saying: Brad Guzan    
"You always have someone either pushing you, or you're pushing someone else. That's the nature of ...
New York City FC gets Nemec off its books    
Slovakian Adam Nemec, the symbol of New York City FC's troubled season, is gone. The club ...
Making a List: European Summer Transfers, U.S. Abroad    
The European transfer market closed with little summer activity among Americans. Only a handful of Americans ...
Video Pick: Five fabulous misses from the Bundesliga    
Schadenfreude from the folks Bundesliga, who compiled the "best" squandered chances to score easy goals from ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives