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Page last updated at 20:56 GMT, Wednesday, 21 October 2009 21:56 UK

Wednesday football as it happened

GOALFLASHES AND MAJOR INCIDENTS (all times BST)

606: DEBATE

To get involved use 606 or text us your views & comments on 81111. (Not all contributions can be used)

By Jonathan Stevenson


2155: I don't want to go, but I must. Job done for Manchester United and for Chelsea as they move to within touching distance of the knockout stage. Join Bevo tomorrow for the Uefa Europa League, and I'll see you for a spot of lunch on Saturday when the Premier League returns. So long, and thanks for all the fish.

From ConorLeedsFan on 606: "Chelsea looked excellent tonight. I know Atletico were pretty awful, but Essien's and Lampard's performances were fantastic nonetheless and with Ancelotti's European experience, I would definitely make them favourites for the Champo League along with Barca."

2147: I'm buzzing off that Real Madrid-AC Milan game, what brilliant entertainment. Fabulous goals, disallowed goals, goalkeeping howlers, a bit of argy-bargy, a late injustice and then a wonderful late winner. It came from nowhere and it's why we love this game.

From Kev, Newcastle, via text on 81111: "Regarding the best keeper in the world debate - Shay Given has been unbelievable behind some shambolic defenders (Bramble, Boumsong etc). Surely the general quality of the defence needs to be considered when awarding this title?"
It does, and as they showed again tonight, Real Madrid don't have one

2141: Euro Macca: "It's all got a bit naughty late on as Daniel Van Buyten was sent off for Bayern, who finished with nine men and defeated 2-1 by Bordeaux to slip to third in Group A. In Group C, Marseille's Laurent Bonnart was shown a second yellow but the French club hung on to beat FC Zurich."

From nbell86 at Twitter: "Well I'll just wipe the egg from my face... great result for Milan considering their form."

2138: Fabulous scenes for the Rossoneri at the Bernabeu as the final whistle went - their under-pressure coach Leonardo was mobbed by his coaching staff, what a week it has been for the fledgling Brazilian gaffer.

2136: Full-time Real Madrid 2-3 AC Milan

2135: Full-time Chelsea 4-0 Atletico Madrid

2135: Real Madrid midfielder Xabi Alonso's curling low strike is destined for the bottom corner before AC Milan keeper Dida palms the ball round the post.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Chelsea goal: It just gets worse for Atletico as a Chelsea free-kick is headed into his own net by Luis Perea.

2133: GOAL Chelsea 4-0 Atletico Madrid

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Milan goal: Sorry Real fans, but after that last goal was disallowed that is justice done. There's no ruling this one out as Clarence Seedorf clips a cross to the back post and with no Real defenders anywhere near, Alex Pato expertly controls his volley past Iker Casillas. Wonderfully well taken.

2130: GOAL Real Madrid 2-3 AC Milan

Handbags
2128: Madness in Madrid. A moment of redemption for Iker Casillas as he makes a brilliant save from Alex Pato's low shot. From the corner, Thiago Silva heads home and Milan should be 3-2 up, but for some crazy reason referee Frank De Bleeckere from Belgium disallows the goal. Casillas looked like he barged into Sergio Ramos, it just has to be allowed to stand.

2126: Raul almost gets the ball in the net at the Bernabeu after Dida spills Kaka's shot, but he's adjudged to be offside anyway. Six minutes left there, just over five left at Chelsea.

Christie from Surrey, via text on 81111: "Casillas best goalkeeper in the world? No chance - Buffon has been IFFHS keeper of the year four out of the last six years. Just look at his save v Maccabi Haifa in the second minute tonight and you can see why. Casillas has had an abysmal evening!"

2121: Euro Macca: "Pointless Marseille have the lead in Zurich, with ex-Premier Leaguer Gabriel Heinze scoring the goal. Not so good news for you Maccabi Haifa fans out there as teenager Tiago da Silva Dutra has had his marching orders."

2120: Ronaldinho does Pepe down the Milan left and after his cross it half-cleared, Clarence Seedorf balloons over from just inside the Real box.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Real goal: This one could not be more in the melting pot. Raul takes a corner quickly, chipping it to the edge of the box where substitute Roython Drenthe takes a touch and then wallops a left-footer into the bottom corner past Dida's despairing dive.

2118: GOAL Real Madrid 2-2 AC Milan

2117: Euro Macca: This is the 11th time that Real Madrid and AC Milan have met in this competition - in its various forms - since they first squared off over 50 years ago. If things stay as they are it will be the first time the away side has won. The only previous time the home side has not been victorious was 20 years ago when Marco van Basten - remember him? - grabbed a late equaliser for Milan."

From Blue BA on 606: "Lampard gets the goal he deserves. Goal 133 takes him one ahead of Jimmy Greaves in Chelsea's all-time scoring charts."

2113: Real Madrid have started to fight back in the Bernabeu. They were just stunned after Andrea Pirlo's leveller and Alex Pato's second. About 20 minutes left.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Chelsea goal: The Spaniards have collapsed - only question now is whether coach Abel Resino will be sacked in the morning. Frank Lampard plays a one-two with Michael Essien and then rifles in a right-foot shot from 20 yards that flies past Sergio Asenjo. His last goal for Chelsea was against Sunderland on 18 August.

2110: GOAL Chelsea 3-0 Atletico Madrid

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Milan goal: He's the best goalkeeper in the world, no question, but that is kamikaze stuff from Iker Casillas, so unlike him. Massimo Ambrosini floats a ball over the top and Casillas races off his line, slides and doesn't get near the ball, Alex Pato gratefully rolling the ball into the empty net to give Milan the lead. Football. I just damn well love it.

2108: GOAL Real Madrid 1-2 AC Milan

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Milan goal: That is absolutely sensational. With nothing on, no-one to pass to and no-one even moving ahead of him, Andrea Pirlo takes a touch and fairly rifles a right-foot shot in from 35 yards that swerves away from the dive of Iker Casillas and settles in the bottom corner. The Bernabeu is stunned into silence. Genius.

2105: GOAL Real Madrid 1-1 AC Milan

2103: AC Milan haul off Pippo Inzaghi and send on Marco Borriello, who at 27 is a relative whippersnapper in Rossoneri terms.

2101: Someone just asked me to sum up Ronaldinho's performance tonight. Well after a bright start, he's gone missing. When you think back four years to one of the great individual displays of all time, his fall from grace has been startling. Hang on, must have something in my eye...

2058: Sergio Aguero has a fine chance to pull one back for Atletico but he delays and delays his shot and when it comes in Petr Cech makes the save.

From Mike Weenink, Bristol, via text on 81111: "Alberto Aquilani makes his debut as he comes on for the last 15 minutes of Liverpool's reserve game v Sunderland!"

2055: Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema is not closed down quick enough and lets fly with a 25-yard shot which Dida parries over.

2055: Euro Macca's in the goals, too: "A couple of early second-half goals for you lovely Euro peeps. Givaldinho Hulk is proving to be a big man for the big occasion as he grabs his second of the evening to put Porto 2-1 ahead. Juve are also in front, Giorgio Chiellini is their scorer."

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Chelsea goal: It had been coming at the start of the second half. Atletico are playing like a team with no confidence and from Frank Lampard's corner, Salomon Kalou heads into the ground and into the net. No men on the posts and you get what you deserve.

2053: GOAL Chelsea 2-0 Atletico Madrid

2052: Sergio Asenjo makes another good save for Atletico at Chelsea, this time from a Nicolas Anelka shot as the Blues push forward for a second. Moments, later, Asenjo has to tip over a long throw into his area.

2050: Raul is allowed to walk into the Milan penalty area unchallenged and he pulls a left-foot shot wide of the far post. Uefa president Michel Platini is high up in the stands at the Bernabeu.

2048: Back under way at Stamford Bridge and at the Bernabeu. And Paul, below - no doubts whatsoever at the minute. You should've seen the looks on two Liverpool fans' faces in the office as Sky did a highlights package of Xabio Alonso at half-time. Almost enough to bring a tear to my eye.

From Paul_Seaton at Twitter: "Just a thought, but do Liverpool miss £28m Xabi Alonso more than United miss £80m Cristiano Ronaldo?"

2044: More Euro Macca with which to fill the half-time void: "There's not much going on elsewhere in Europe. It's 0-0 between Wolfsburg and Besitkas, which is not so bad news for Manchester United, who are sitting pretty on top of Group B on nine points. Zurich and Marseille have also failed to trouble the scorers in Group C, where Real Madrid are looking fairly comfortable. Things can change quickly in football though."

2041: Just occasionally, watching AC Milan is like taking in a veterans' game. You know that all the talent in the world is out there and in their heads they can still do it, but the legs are just not quite quick enough to pull it off. Sometimes it makes me feel sad.

2037: Euro Macca's cross with me. He thinks I slaughtered him for the Hulk comment at 2023. I might have to pour him a nice glass of Bordeaux to keep these updates coming. Talking of which: "Bordeaux have turned things around at the Stade Chaban Delmas as Marc Planus has given them a 2-1 lead at home to 10-man Bayern. It's half-time in the other Group A game and Juventus are being held at home by my favourite team - Maccabi Haifa. Juve are not having much fun in Europe recently - they've failed to win in their last six Champs League games."

From Wicked_badger, via text on 81111: "Madrid play nice football but I wonder if English teams might have more joy against them with their more direct style of play. The Real defence seem to back off when players run at them."
You mean like when Liverpool tonked them 4-0?

2032: Half-time Chelsea 1-0 Atletico Madrid

2031: Half-time Real Madrid 1-0 AC Milan

2030: Real's Marcelo crashes in a 25-yard left-footer that Dida manages to push away from danger.

2028: Blimey, we're nearly at half-time in these seven Champions League games. Lassana Diarra crashes a shot millimetres past the angle of Dida's post and crossbar at the Bernabeu.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Chelsea goal: Frank Lampard goes all Ronaldinho on us (easy on the weight gags) with a brilliant no-look pass to Ashley Cole down the Blues left and his ball along the six-yard box is slammed into the roof of the net by a certain Salomon Kalou.

2025: GOAL Chelsea 1-0 Atletico Madrid

2023: Sometimes in life, it's more difficult to take the easiest option, isn't it, Euro Macca? Er: "Apoel must have gone and made Porto very angry as Givaldinho Hulk, sorry, has scored an equaliser for the home side. It's 1-1 with 10 minutes to go until half-time."

2021: We've seen some top-class saves already tonight, and that's another one. Salomon Kalou lets fly from 18 yards at Chelsea and it takes a deflection before Sergio Asenjo pulls off a stunning one-handed save.

2020: More Euro Macca: "There's now been six own goals in the last two days. Do Europe's top players not know which way they're kicking or something? Michael Ciani is obviously a quick learner as he has scored at the right end for Bordeaux to make it 1-1. Bayern are down to 10 men as Thomas Muller has been red carded."

2018: Ronaldinho bursts to life from Andrea Pirlo's pass but his shot is bravely blocked by Sergio Ramos. Moments later, Lassana Diarra's cheeky little chip floats on to the roof of Dida's net.

2015: Euro Macca sends his latest: "It's looking like a good night for Chelsea as Apoel Nicosia lead in Porto. It's going down as an own goal by Alvaro Pereira - lots of o.g.s around at the moment isn't there? Either way it adds up to a five-point lead at the top of the group for Chelsea, if things stay the same." More to come soon, and trust me, it's golden.

From RidRed on 606: "Raul's goal may have been "easy", but he was the only man on the pitch paying attention."

2010: Milan's Clarence Seedorf crosses from the left and Pippo Inzaghi can't quite get his volley on target at the back post. He's given offside anyway, but he wasn't, no way.

2007: It's calmed down at Chelsea after a very eventful opening. After receiving some treatment for an early injury, Ashley Cole is back up and running.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
Real goal: That's the worst piece of goalkeeping I've seen in a very, very long time. After some good possession from Milan, they find themselves behind. Esteban Granero's shot is straight at Dida and he appears to have collected, before dropping the ball at the feet of Raul, who gleefully taps in his 66th - and easiest - Champions League goal. Oh dear.

2003: GOAL Real Madrid 1-0 AC Milan

2002: Outrageous stuff from Ronaldinho at the Bernabeu, balancing the ball on his chest and then shoulder and almost his neck - truly remarkable. He's booed for his efforts. At The Bridge, Diego Forlan turns smartly and fires in a right-foot shot that Petr Cech saves.

2001: Golden chance for Chelsea as Deco feeds Michael Ballack and he slips it across the penalty area to Salomon Kalou. He must score, but somehow the forward drags his shot wide under no pressure from 15 yards.

1959: Euro Macca's in the goal action, and not before time: "We have our first goal of the evening's games (that did not take place in Moscow) and it's Bayern Munich who have it. They have Bordeaux's Michael Ciani to thank for it though as he puts through his own net. Advantage to the Germans in the clash of the top two in Group A."

1957: Chelsea have the ball in the Atletico net and they are not happy when it is ruled out. Frank Lampard's free-kick from 45 yards is whacked into the box and with Salomon Kalou - who was offside - trying to nod it in, it goes over Sergio Asenjo's flailing arms and into the net. But Kalou was off.

1954: Atletico's Sergio Aguero fires into the side-netting having been ruled to have marginally stayed onside as the Chelsea defence pushed up. He looked a shade off actually.

1953: Chance for Atletico at Chelsea, Simao's cross from the left headed goalwards by Diego Forlan and Petr Cech making the save.

BBC Sport's European blogger Phil Minshull in the Bernabeu: "Argentine striker Gonzalo Higuain, who was expected to replace Karim Benzema in the Real starting line-up after the Frenchman's abysmal last two games, is injured. A Real spokesman has just told us he'd got 'minor muscular problems'. He didn't say when the problems happened but it must have been in the last couple of hours as Real only have six men on the bench and there's no out-and-out forward among the subs."

From Derbtastic at Twitter: "Speaking of Champions League birthday goals, what kind of odds would you get on Hilario getting his first today?"
The Portuguese keeper is 34 today, good work Derbtastic.

1948: Lively start from Ronaldinho in the Bernabeu, a couple of lovely little flicks early doors. How can this not be a belter? Come on.

1946: Early action at Chelsea as Juliano Belletti fires over a cross from the right and Sergio Asenjo collects in his six-yard box.

1945: They are under way in the Bernabeu, under way at Stamford Bridge and probably under way in the other five Champions League games, though I don't at present have a visual on all of them.

1943: Chelsea are unbeaten in their last 19 Champions League home games, their 2-1 defeat against Barcelona on 22 February 2006 the last time they went down at The Bridge in the CL. Atletico are winless in their last five CL games and haven't even scored in their last three.

1941: So Kaka is charged with leading the Real Madrid assault on his old team AC Milan - no room for sentiment in football these days but don't be surprised if the Brazilian refuses to celebrate if/when he scores. Odds on Ronaldinho getting another standing ovation?

From Phyrex on 606: "All the names in the Milan line-up - with the notable exception of Pato - are well past their prime. No idea why Bonera does not even make the bench."
Pirlo? Behave. The rest you can have.

From Rob from Flitwick, via text on 81111: "Why do all managers persist with Kalou? He's rubbish. Why not Joe Cole, or give Sturridge or Zhirkov a chance?"

1932: BBC Sport's European blogger Phil Minshull is at the Bernabeu tonight and he was there for the press conferences yesterday. Here's his chat: "We witnessed possibly the dullest press conference in the entire history of the Champions League. Clearly 'it was be nice to Leonardo night' as the Italian media, or Spanish for that matter, failed to ask one single confrontational question. The most controversial moment was when he insisted that Ronaldinho was consistently playing well, which caused some slight murmurs and an almost audible sucking in of breath from the Italian contingent in the conference."

1929: Real Madrid v AC Milan line-ups:
Real Madrid:
Casillas, Sergio Ramos, Pepe, Albiol, Marcelo, Kaka, Lassana Diarra, Alonso, Granero, Benzema, Raul.
Subs: Dudek, Arbeloa, Mahamadou Diarra, Drenthe, Garay, Van der Vaart.
AC Milan: Dida, Oddo, Nesta, Thiago Silva, Zambrotta, Ambrosini, Pirlo, Seedorf, Alexandre Pato, Inzaghi, Ronaldinho.
Subs: Roma, Kaladze, Huntelaar, Flamini, Jankulovski, Borriello, Antonini.
Referee: Frank De Bleeckere (Belgium)

Man United boss Sir Alex Ferguson: "We wanted a bit more of a surge through the middle areas in the second half and not just the wide areas and we did pretty well, created some chances. Fabio has just got cramp, he was absolutely outstanding today."

1924: Cristiano Ronaldo is missing but there are plenty of stars on show at the Bernabeu tonight. AC Milan forward Ronaldinho starts as he returns to the scene of his 2005 heroics while at Barcelona, when he was awarded a standing ovation. Real Madrid stick with Karim Benzema up front despite his recent struggles.

BBC Radio 5 live
BBC Radio 5 live's Pat Nevin: "United were the better team, I though Paul Scholes was absolutely fantastic and down the left Nani and Fabio did very well too. United for me are through now, no doubts about it."

Full time
1921: Full-time CSKA Moscow 0-1 Manchester United
That win all-but ensures United will progress from their group, they now have nine points from three games. Onwards to Sunday, and a meeting with Liverpool at Anfield.

1918: We're well into injury time in Moscow, by the way. Looks like another job very well done by Man United.

1916: CSKA are caught short at the back and United attack with pace, Dimitar Berbatov eventually setting up Anderson with a backheel only for the Brazilian to curl wide from eight yards.

1916: The big news for Chelsea's opponents is that former Man Utd striker Diego Forlan returns to the Atletico Madrid side after being rested for the 3-0 loss against Osasuna. Raul Garcia starts his first game since the opening day of the season. Jose Reyes, formerly of Arsenal, and Florent Sinama-Pongolle - once of Liverpool and Blackburn - are on the bench.

1914: Michael Carrick comes on for the last two minutes plus stoppage time.

1913: Fabio is stretchered off for Manchester United, didn't see what happened.

Goooooooaaaaaaaaal
United goal: What a great time to score, with four minutes left. Nani whips over a cross from the left, Dimitar Berbatov gets a flick on and at the far post from a narrow angle, Luis Valencia squeezes a shot past Igor Akinfeev, who will be a bit disappointed with that.

1912: GOAL CSKA Moscow 0-1 Manchester United

1910: Milos Krasic drifts past his man down the right once again and United manage to boot his cross away from danger. He's been impressive, the 24-year-old Serb.

1909: Dimitar Berbatov blazes over the CSKA box from 25 yards. I think he's getting a kicking on the 606 thread, the Bulgarian.

Someone has struck the woodwork
1908: Magnificent stuff from Manchester United, absolute brilliance from Luis Valencia who plays a one-two with Dimitar Berbatov and two one-twos with Nani before leathering a right-foot shot that crashes against the crossbar from 20 yards. Would have been a glorious goal.

1906: Chelsea make four changes from the side that lost to Aston Villa with Branislav Ivanovic, Juliano Belletti, Michael Ballack and Salomon Kalou coming in - Ricardo Carvalho, Florent Malouda, the injured Jose Bosingwa and the suspended Didier Drogba make way.

1905: United are up against it for a moment as a ball into their box is knocked towards Milos Krasic and as he tries to get a shot in the flag goes up - woeful decision because he was at least two yards onside.

1902: Luis Valencia picks out Michael Owen from the right-hand side of the CSKA box and remarkably the striker mis-kicks on the volley, the ball finishing up behind him.

From bernardpollacco at Twitter: "Fergie replaced wrong player - should have been Nani coming off to replace Owen not Scholes, but at least he'll be fit for Sunday."

1859: Young Tomas Necid is hauled off by the hosts and even younger Nika Piliev is sent on by Juande Ramos.

1858: Chelsea v Atletico Madrid line-ups:
Chelsea:
Cech, Belletti, Ivanovic, Terry, Ashley Cole, Essien, Ballack, Lampard, Deco, Kalou, Anelka.
Subs: Hilario, Carvalho, Joe Cole, Malouda, Zhirkov, Sturridge, Bruma.
Atletico Madrid: Sergio Asenjo, Ujfalusi, Perea, Dominguez, Antonio Lopez, Cleber Santana, Raul Garcia, Paulo Assuncao, Simao, Forlan, Aguero.
Subs: De Gea, Jurado, Maxi, Sinama Pongolle, Juanito, Reyes, Pablo.
Referee: Florian Meyer (Germany)

1856: Paul Scholes is taken off and Michael Owen comes on to partner Dimitar Berbatov up front.

1855: In an extraordinary turn of events, we're going to treat Real Madrid v AC Milan in the same way as we would a game involving a British team. So, team news from the Bernabeu and Chelsea on the way shortly.

From Sam in Devon, via text on 81111: "I wish Nani was consistent, even if he was consistently bad... at least Fergie could just get rid of him."

1850: Less than half an hour left in Moscow and it's still CSKA Moscow 0-0 Manchester United. A free-kick is swung into the United box and Nemanja Vidic deals with it brilliantly.

1848: CSKA take Georgy Schennikov off and send on Pavel Mamaev.

1846: Similar story to the first half, with United enjoying more possession, and they are so close to going ahead as Nani heads goalwards from Gary Neville's right-wing cross and Igor Akinfeev pulls off a brilliant save at his near post.

1843: Rio Ferdinand is taken off by Manchester United, with Wes Brown on in his place. Probably just a precaution for Sunday's game at Anfield against Liverpool.

Yellow card
1840: Dimitar Berbatov goes down theatrically in the CSKA penalty area under a challenge from Alexei Berezutsky and is booked for 'simulation' by referee Claus Bo Larsen, while up the other end and Alan Dzagoyev sticks it in the United net only to be correctly adjudged offside.

From Zippy, George and Bungle on 606: "United fans will notice that Anderson always picks the right option and invariably gets it wrong and Nani always picks the wrong option and usually gets it spot on."

1834: A colleague mentioned earlier how Nani always seems to take the wrong option and he does that again - after brilliantly drifting past Georgy Schennikov, he crosses along the six-yard box, failing to pick out either Dimitar Berbatov or Luis Valencia.

Man United boss Sir Alex Ferguson: "We're getting a lot of space behind the right-back area but we should fill the box a bit more. We just need a goal. As for the pitch, I don't think it's an advantage to anyone but it's not really a handicap to real footballers. It's not too bad."

1831: We are back under way at the Luzhniki Stadium.

1830: Congratulations to Imtiaaz for getting the 1824 teaser spot on - it was indeed the great Ole Gunnar Solskjaer who scored twice on his 29th birthday when United beat Nantes 5-1 in 2002.

From Anon, via text on 81111: "No adventure from United, Berbatov too deep to be a lone striker with only Nani and Valencia to support him. Anyone else think Owen might stretch the game a bit...?"

1824: Nemanja Vidic has had a couple of shaky moments so far, not quite looking his usual composed self - and all this on his 28th birthday, too. Only one Manchester United player has ever bagged in the Champions League on their birthday - first correct answer I get on Twitter gets a name check on the live text.

From LukeDickinson at Twitter: "My Chelsea mad nephew's on his way to The Bridge for his first match. Hoping for a win to keep him and dad - SWFC fan - happy."

1819: Here's more from Euro Macca. He's really not very European, I have to be honest with you - though he does get the San Miguels in from time to time: "So, goalless at half-time for Manchester United in Moscow. Goals fans will no doubt be disappointed but it's hardly unexpected. United have only conceded in the first-half in one away game in Champions League action since 23 October 2007 when they made the trip to Kiev. The only blot on their copybook since then - Scott McDonald and Celtic."

1815: Half-time CSKA Moscow 0-0 Manchester United

1814: Half-chance for Dimitar Berbatov as he tries to collect a Luis Valencia cross from the right and roll Vasily Berezutsky, but his control is lacking for once and the opportunity goes begging.

1813: United have scored 27 goals this season, and 20 of them have come in the second half of games. I'm trying.

1811: Four minutes left in the first half and it's still CSKA Moscow 0-0 Manchester United. The hosts have enjoyed a little more possession in recent times.

1808: Well I didn't expect to rock up to work today and watch Gary Neville curl a left-footer into the top corner from 25 yards. And it probably won't happen now, as the right-back sends his shot about a foot too high. Ooooh.

From A_SWAN_O_MIA on 606: "Plenty of endeavour from Nani and Fabio, seriously lacking a decent final ball though."

1803: Milos Krasic does really well to skip past Fabio down the CSKA right and he fires in a cross-shot that flies just past the far post, Edwin van der Sar sensibly allowing the ball to drift out.

From Denby, Grimsby, via text on 81111: "With Mike Newell's well-documented views on women in football, appointing Hope Powell as his successor would be magnificently ironic."

1759: First semblance of an opening for the hosts as Vasily Berezutsky whips over a cross from the left and Tomas Necid heads at Edwin van der Sar. He was just tilting back, the striker.

1758: We'll be hearing more from Euro Macca later, but here's his first gambit for the day: "Happy 21st October, by the way. On this day back in 2008 - as in last year - we had a Champions League record-tying 36 goals to celebrate. We're a bit behind schedule if we're going to top that - by my calculations a goal every 19-and-a-half minutes is the order of the day."

1755: Horrible for Igor Akinfeev, that. Paul Scholes hammers one in from 35 yards and it dips just in front of the CSKA keeper, Akinfeev somehow managing to get just enough on the ball to ensure it deflects wide of his right-hand post. Could have been a howler.

1754: Anderson curls in a free-kick from 25 yards, but it plops in front of Igor Akinfeev and he collects with minimum fuss.

1751: There are plenty of jeers when United put their foot on the ball and slow the game down, the locals haven't come to see that. The away team just shading it so far.

1749: Fergie's words are ringing true - we haven't seen many long balls so far in Moscow. One such one down the right from Gary Neville is aimed at Luis Valencia, but the ball spins back and completely bamboozles the winger.

From therealdave35 at Twitter: "I don't think United will have enough to break down a stubborn CSKA Moscow tonight, Ferguson will settle for a draw."

1743: United's turn to enjoy more of the play, with Dimitar Berbatov and Paul Scholes both showcasing their phenomenal passing ability. Anderson swings a free-kick into the box and Igor Akinfeev - an apparent United target - totally misses his punch before it drifts out for a goalkick.

From Dean_Machine89 on 606: "Vidic messing up two passes in a row and gifting them possession in a good position... he needs to improve before Sunday if he is going to have Torres to handle. Don't forget last season, I'm sure he won't."

1737: CSKA are knocking it around quite nicely at the start of this one, United doing a bit of shadow-chasing right now. A corner is flicked on by Elvir Rahimic, but United clear their lines.

1735: Milos Krasic jinks past two Man United challenges, the second a very half-hearted attempt from Rio Ferdinand, before lashing left-footed over the bar from the edge of the box.

1732: Lively start from Nani down the Man United left but he has two crosses cleared and then fires a shot over from an impossible angle.

1730: Bang on cue, we are under way in Moscow.

1727: The teams are out at the Luzhniki Stadium, big night for CSKA this and a lively welcome greets the players.

1725: Hmm, sounds like something fishy's going on down at Blundell Park... Anyway, if you're wondering what else is happening in the world of football today, here's a snapshot: Rafa's woes continue; Edgar Davids is wanted at the Walkers; and Boro chairman Steve Gibson is trying - and failing - to explain his appallingly-timed sacking of Gareth Southgate. Is this the winner of the Most Cringeworthy Statement by a Chairman of the Season Award? "We had a strategy for Gareth's replacement. Timing was determined by the implementation of that strategy," he said after their 2-0 victory over Derby took them to within a point of Newcastle at the top of the Championship. If they don't get promoted now...

From Dan Pegg, Grimsby, via text on 81111: "Stevo, I know it's not the glamour of the Champs League, but down in League Two there are murmurings that my beloved Grimsby Town are considering appointing Hope Powell as our manager. Could you post this on the live text, would love to see the reaction."

From philmcnulty at Twitter: "Not a fan of all Everton chairman Bill Kenwright does, but huge credit here."

Man Utd boss Sir Alex Ferguson: "When we came out to the stadium last night we did think back to that day last May. It was a good night. As for the pitch, we need to keep the ball on the ground and keep good pace on our passes. If you knock balls over the top it might skip on, so not a great thing to do."

1712: Something's got to give this afternoon. CSKA have won their last six home games in Europe, while Man United are unbeaten in their last 13 away ties in the Champions League - and they can equal Ajax's CL record of 14 if they avoid defeat today.

From ImOnAManUtdTing on 606: "Hopefully Anderson will be playing in 'the hole'. Give us a chance to see him in an attacking position for once."

1705: Even Fergie's still got firsts to chase, you know. Manchester United have never beaten a Russian club and this will be their sixth attempt at doing so. Their two previous matches in the world's largest country both ended in goalless draws, against Torpedo Moscow and Rotor Volgograd.

1702: Manchester United's Patrice Evra and Ryan Giggs both picked up knocks in the win over Bolton and have not travelled. United boss Sir Alex Ferguson makes five changes as Johnny Evans, Michael Carrick and Michael Owen drop to the bench. Nemanja Vidic, Nani, Paul Scholes, Fabio and John O'Shea are the players who come in. Striker Wayne Rooney and midfielder Darren Fletcher have also remained in England. CSKA Moscow are without former Liverpool winger Mark Gonzalez, who has been ruled out for the year with an ankle injury. The Russians also make five changes with Sergei Ignashevich, Vasili Berezutski, Elvir Rahimic, Georgi Schennikov and Tomas Necid back in the side.

1700: Stevo's predos (back to a paltry 12.5% success rate last night, in case you were wondering) :
Bordeaux 1-1 Bayern Munich
Chelsea 3-1 Atletico Madrid
CSKA Moscow 1-1 Man Utd
FC Porto 2-0 APOEL Nicosia
FC Zurich 1-2 Marseille
Juventus 2-0 Maccabi Haifa
Real Madrid 3-2 AC Milan
Wolfsburg 3-1 Besiktas

1655: CSKA Moscow v Manchester United line-ups:
CSKA Moscow:
Akinfeev, Semberas, Ignashevich, Alexei Berezutsky, Vasili Berezutsky, Odiah, Rahimic, Schennikov, Krasic, Dzagoev, Necid.
Subs: Pomazan, Daniel Carvalho, Mamaev, Aldonin, Piliev, Oliseh, Grigoriev.
Man Utd: Van der Sar, Neville, Ferdinand, Vidic, Fabio Da Silva, O'Shea, Valencia, Scholes, Anderson, Nani, Berbatov.
Subs: Kuszczak, Brown, Owen, Carrick, Welbeck, Jonathan Evans, Macheda.
Referee: Claus Bo Larsen (Denmark).

From adamfarrell at Twitter: "Gunner-zp hedging his bets by naming almost the whole CSKA team there..."

Rachel Tyrrell, Lincoln, via text on 81111: "Tell you what, this kick-off time is perfect for my little 'uns to get a taste of the Champions League!"

1647: The other game to keep an eye out for later is the Real Madrid v AC Milan showdown at the Bernabeu. Unsurprisingly, Real boss Manuel Pellegrini is already under some pressure despite a fine start to his tenure, while Rossoneri coach Leonardo is in all sorts of trouble after a disastrous opening couple of months to his reign. Milan midfielder Clarence Seedorf knows how important the game is: "We have a lot at stake," he told my colleague Mandeep Sanghera. He's not wrong - check the tables out already.

1644: So United kick-off at 1730 BST, team news on the way shortly. At 1945, seven more games get under way, with perhaps a couple standing out from the crowd. Chelsea take on Atletico Madrid - with Los Colchoneros in a right old mess after a 3-0 spanking at Osasuna on Sunday left them languishing in 15th place in La Liga after a horror start to the season. At least Chelsea's inability to defend set-pieces will give the Spaniards a sniff.

From gunner-zp on 606: "Will be tough for United, I think it'll be a draw. CSKA have some very good players like Carvalho, Krasic, Akinfeev and Dzagoev. Watch out for the two young strikers, Guilherme and Necid."

1638: Get in touch as usual by completing the perfect hat-trick: right foot via text on 81111, left foot courtesy of the 606 thread, and last but not least thump home a header by dropping me a cheeky little line on Twitter. Think Fernando Torres for Spain against New Zealand, and get stuck in.

1634: You probably don't need me to remind you that last May, in the early hours of the morning, United won their third European Cup by beating Chelsea on penalties in the Russian capital. For those of us lucky enough to be present, it was an occasion we are unlikely to ever forget. That was on grass, however - tonight, Fergie's boys will have to turn it on on the plastic stuff.

1630: You might still be at work, but more than 1,500 miles away it's already a chilly evening in Moscow, where CSKA are preparing to welcome Manchester United to the Luzhniki Stadium - a ground Sir Alex Ferguson and his troops know only too well. Welcome to Wednesday's offerings from the world's greatest club competition.



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Champions League results

21 Oct 2009 23:59 UK

Home Team Score Away Team Time
Bordeaux 2-1 Bayern Munich R
Chelsea 4-0 Atletico Madrid R
CSKA Moscow 0-1 Man Utd R
FC Porto 2-1 Apoel Nicosia R
FC Zurich 0-1 Marseille R
Juventus 1-0 Maccabi Haifa R
Real Madrid 2-3 AC Milan R
Wolfsburg 0-0 Besiktas R

see also
Chelsea 4-0 Atletico Madrid
21 Oct 09 |  Europe
CSKA Moscow 0-1 Man Utd
21 Oct 09 |  Europe
European football gallery
21 Oct 09 |  Football
Football on the BBC
11 Aug 10 |  Football


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