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Thursday, March 20, 2014

Manchester United, Borussia Dortmund, Complete UEFA Champions League Quarterfinals Lineup

Manchester United and Dortmund filled the two remaining slots for the UEFA Champions League quarters with the former edging out Olympiacos while the latter progressed in spite of a home defeat to visiting Zenit St. Petersburg.

United scored the three goals they needed against Greek side Olympiakos who wasted several opportunities to score an away goal that could have made the English side’s work on the night much tougher. Robin van Persie scored all the three goals for the Red Devils but it was old guard Ryan Giggs who caught the eye with a vintage performance that made a joke off the much younger players on the pitch.

The hosts needed to score an early goal and it took them 25 minutes to go ahead, Van Persie converting a penalty after he had been howled down by the visitors’ Jose Holebas. The Dutchman doubled his and United’s lead just before half time slotting in Wayne Rooney’s cutback to level the tie on aggregate.

The home team scored what would be the winning goal 7 minutes after resumption through Van Persie's stunning freekick from outside the area. David Moyes' side survived nervy moments in the game as a goal from the visitors would have seen them crush out but profligacy from the Greek's frontline saw the hosts see off the rest of the match and ensure they will be in the draw for the quarters for the first time since 2011.

German side Borussia Dortmund also qualified to the last-8 in spite of losing 1-2 to Zenit St. Petersburg at the Signal-Iduna Park in Dortmund. Having won the first leg 4-2, the Bundesliga side fell behind to a Hulk strike at the quarter hour mark but Sebastian Kehl’s 38th minute header helped calm the home team's nerves before half the interval.

Venezuela international Rondon netted the winner for the Russians in the 73rd minute but the damage had already been done a fortnight ago as the Bundesliga outfit progressed with a 5-4 aggregate win.

Jurgen Klopp and David Moyes’ side will be in the quarterfinals draw tomorrow, Friday, alongside German side Bayern Munich, La Liga trio Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid and Barcelona, English side Chelsea and Ligue 1’s Paris Saint Germain.

Defending champions Bayern Munich qualified for the quarters with a 3-1 aggregate win over Arsenal, the same as Chelsea's win against Galatasaray. Real Madrid were rampant against Schalke 04 who they beat over the two legs scoring 9 goals and conceding only two. Also-favorites, Barcelona, ended Manchester City's quarterfinals hopes with a 4-1 result over the two legs with their La Liga counterparts Atletico Madrid saw off the challenge of AC Milan with a 5-1 aggregate win. Ligue 1 leaders PSG had an easy time against Bayer Leverkusen with Zlatan Ibrahimovic helping them emerge 6-1 winners.

The draw will be conducted in Nyon, Switzerland at 11.00GMT.

And That's thesteifmastertake!!