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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

UEFA Champions League Last-16: Manchester United Face Greek Test as Dortmund Seek for Redemption in Russia

Bundled out of all domestic cup competitions and needing something more than a miracle to defend their Premier League title, Manchester United travel to Greece to tackle Greek giants Olympiakos Piraeus in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League knockout tie.

Trailing 11 points behind fourth-placed Liverpool in the race for next season’s Champions League football, the Red Devils travel to Southern Europe well aware that winning the prestigious tournament may be their only chance of participating in it next season.

They however will need to go past the Greek champions elect who haven’t lost a match since going down 2-1 to Paris Saint Germain in November last year. Jose ‘Michel’ Miguel’s outfit currently lead the Super League with 74 points, 20 ahead of second placed PAOK and haven’t lost a league match for a year.

Their opponents in contrast are struggling to get a grip in the Premier League but collected a morale-boosting 2-0 win over Crystal Palace at the weekend. Their form in Europe however has been almost outstanding as they topped their group and are unbeaten so far in the competition.

The Greeks have met the English side four times before losing all the four matches. Their last meeting was in October 2002 where the Old Trafford side collected a 3-2 second leg win after cruising 4-0 in the first leg.

In the other match on the night, fast-fading Borussia Dortmund make the long trip to Russia to face Zenit Saint Petersburg. Jurgen Klopp’s men hit a new low in the Bundesliga this past weekend going down 3-0 to relegation candidates Hamburg, a defeat that saw them fall 20 points behind Bayern Munich in the race for the German domestic title.

They clash against Luciano Spalletti’s Zenit who haven’t played a competitive match since December last year but will nevertheless fancy their chances in front of the home crowd.

And That's thesteifmastertake!!