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Champions League as it happened

LAST 16 QUALIFIERS
Group winners: Roma, Panathinaikos, Barcelona, Liverpool, Manchester United, Bayern Munich, Porto, Juventus.
Others: Chelsea, Inter Milan, Sporting, Atletico Madrid, Villarreal, Lyon, Arsenal, Real Madrid.

WEDNESDAY'S RESULTS

GROUP E
Celtic 2-0 Villarreal
Man Utd 2-2 AaB

GROUP F
Lyon 2-3 Bayern Munich
Steaua Bucharest 0-1 Fiorentina

GROUP G
Dynamo Kiev 1-0 Fenerbahce
FC Porto 2-0 Arsenal

GROUP H
Juventus 0-0 BATE
Real Madrid 3-0 Zenit St Petersburg

GOALFLASHES AND MAJOR INCIDENTS (all times GMT)

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

By Caroline Cheese

2151: Why oh why must we wait until the end of February for the return of the Champions League? The 24 and 25 February to be exact, with second legs on 10 and 11 March. I'm going to bury myself in a hole until then... bye!

2148: The draw is on Friday 19 December at 1200 GMT. Any number of delights await us. Liverpool or Manchester United against Jose Mourinho's Inter Milan or perhaps Juande Ramos's Real Madrid. Or how about Chelsea or Arsenal against Barcelona or Bayern Munich?

2145: Two things. Emmanuel Eboue made a special trip over to the visiting fans at the Dragao Stadium and threw his shirt into the crowd, with the Gunners fans giving him a warm reception. Aalborg caretaker coach Allan Kuhn was given a heroes' welcome by the away support at Old Trafford after masterminding a draw. He has led the Danish side to a 13-match unbeaten run - but will now step down as a permanent coach comes in.

2142: Porto's 2-0 win over a poor Arsenal side earns them first place in Group G. Dynamo Kiev take the Uefa Cup berth.

2139: Bayern Munich hold on for victory at Lyon and are Group F winners, ahead of the French champions. Fiorentina take the Uefa Cup spot after a 1-0 win over Steaua Bucharest.

2137: And there endeth Group E, which is won by Manchester United despite their home draw against Aalborg. Villarreal are second. Aalborg are Uefa Cup-bound. Nothing but a bit of restored pride for Celtic.

2136: FULL-TIME Celtic 2-0 Villarreal

2136: FULL-TIME Man Utd 2-2 Aalborg

2135: FULL-TIME Porto 2-0 Arsenal

2134: Group H is done and dusted. Juventus finish top ahead of Real Madrid, with Zenit heading for the Uefa Cup where they will defend their title.

2132: Shunsuke Nakamura's trickery on the right sets up a chance for debutant Paul McGowan but the youngster heads wide from four yards. It's not turning out to be a very good night for young McGowan, who was booked a moment ago for kicking the ball away.

2131: "I'm not upset by Arsenal's position in the group, I'm upset by how bad they have played YET AGAIN!"
rockin van p on 606
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2127: Wayne Rooney drives the pass through for Carlos Tevez, but the Argentine striker lashes his shot into the side netting. Has he done enough to convince Fergie? I'm not sure... He's got into some good positions and worked well with Rooney, but missed a few decent chances.

2126: "With Inter, Chelsea and probably Real all finishing in second place it doesn't make a big difference what position Arsenal finish in!"
Sam via text on 81111
But finishing first also means you get home advantage in the second leg, which usually proves handy

2122: Celtic still holding onto their 2-0 lead. All gone a bit flat at Celtic Park. Shunsuke Nakamura has been in fine form for Gordon Strachan's side tonight.

2120: Arsenal make their final change as Mark Randall replaces Alex Song. Difficult to see a way back for the Gunners though.

2119: The past makes way for the future at Old Trafford as Gary Neville is replaced by Rafael. The Brazilian youngster is wearing a big smile. Grandad Gaz doesn't look so chuffed.

2117: Now United hit the woodwork as Wayne Rooney's free-kick is deflected onto the bar by defender Steve Olfers. United in control - which means Aalborg will almost certainly score in a minute, if the first half is anything to go by.

2115: A let-off for Arsenal as Lucho Gonzalez smashes a shot wide when he should have found the target, and almost at the same time, Wayne Rooney finds Gary Neville unmarked in the box at Old Trafford but his shot is saved.

2113: "Porto haven't even played great. Arsenal have just been lame. The only positive is that most of the first team are not playing but why the hell would Wenger want to play another strong team in the last 16?"
Defenders_Nightmare on 606
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2112: The Porto fans start the "oles" at the Dragao Stadium. Arsenal have been rank bad tonight. Awful, in fact.

2111: GOAL Lyon 2-3 Bayern Munich
Ooh. Cripes. Karim Benzema has got another goal back for the French side. This could get interesting - Lyon need two more for the win which would see them top Group F, they've got 22 minutes to get them.

2111: "If Ramos is this good at Real, imagine what Harry Redknapp could do there."
Tom, Lancs, via text on 81111
That, I would pay to see

2109: GOAL Steaua Bucharest 0-1 Fiorentina
Fiorentina put one foot into the Uefa Cup as Alberto Gilardino breaks the deadlock in Bucharest. They only need a point to seal third spot in Group F.

2108: "I've tried to stay positive all season but I'm beginning to feel that there are a few players at Arsenal who just have no determination to win every week."
Anon via text on 81111

2102: Real Madrid legend Raul has had two shots and scored twice. He is now four goals short of Alfred Di Stefano's all-time scoring record of 307 for the Spanish giants.

2101: A double change for Arsenal. Kieran Gibbs and Jack Wilshere on, Abou Diaby - who has been awful - and Aaron Ramsay off.

2059: GOAL Real Madrid 3-0 Zenit
Ha. That is absolute class. Arjen Robben slides the ball through for Raul and with the keeper advancing, he nonchalantly scoops the ball over the top and into the net. Juande Ramos=managerial genius.

2056: GOAL Lyon 1-3 Bayern Munich
Maybe there is hope yet for Lyon as Sidney Govou nets. The French side have to win though, they've got 37 minutes to get another three. Easy!

2055: GOAL Porto 2-0 Arsenal
Arsenal give the ball away in midfield and Fernando sets up Lisandro Lopez, who is played onside by Emmanuel Eboue and takes full advantage - smashing a ferocious shot high into the net.

2054: GOAL Man Utd 2-2 Aalborg
Anderson finds Wayne Rooney's run between two defenders and the England striker shoots first time under the keeper.

2053: A flurry of action. Wayne Rooney gets away with a wild lunge at an Aalborg defender and moments later Carlos Tevez heads an easy chance wide from Nani's cross. At Porto, Emmanuel Eboue is booked for a foul.

2051: GOAL Real Madrid 2-0 Zenit St Petersburg
Arjen Robben skips down the right channel and scores with a quite brilliant left-foot chip over the keeper. Stunning goal... which is nonetheless meaningless unless BATE can beat Juventus.

2050: Under way everywhere in the second half.

2048: Paul Scholes is on for the second half at Old Trafford, as is Ji-Sung Park. Scholes has now made more Champions League appearances (104) than any other Englishman. Gibson and Giggs are off.

2047: "Re 2039: Don't diss the girl defenders! I could have saved both AaBs goals, wearing Nicklas Bendtner's old pink and rather brilliant boots! Bendtner to score!"
Anon - but presumably female - via text on 81111

2044: "Yes - it was shocking marking for the second goal (and first) but you'll be hard pressed to find a better headed finish all season, beautifully guided into the bottom corner."
dabigblast on 606
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2041: This game marks the last in charge for Aalborg's caretaker boss Allan Kuhn, who took over after Bruce Rioch's sacking in October. He has led the team on an 11-game unbeaten run - but even that wasn't enough to earn him the job full-time. How about a win at Old Trafford? Will that do?

2039: Well I must say I'm pleased I'm not part of Manchester United's defence: they will no doubt be experiencing a blast from the Fergie hairdryer at this very moment. Dare I say, even I, a girl, might have provided better marking for that second Aalborg goal.

2037: It's Danny the Stat. And I must warn you, he's not happy. "Hmmm. Let's get the niceties out of the way. Arsenal's Carlos Vela takes the half-time Player Rater honours in Portugal with 7.45. Celtic goalscorer Shaun Maloney is the king of Parkhead with 7.67. But I'm not going to lie to you, readers, Danny the Stat is furious. I'm seeing sixes, sevens and eights for Man Utd, while Aalborg's players are languishing with fours and fives. They're ahead! They're winning at actual Old Trafford! What more can they do...? Get involved, people."
Man Utd v Aalborg Player Rater

2033: HALF-TIME Celtic 2-0 Villarreal

2033: HALF-TIME Man Utd 1-2 Aalborg

2032: GOAL Celtic 2-0 Villarreal
A minute into injury time, Aiden McGeady drives through unopposed from the halfway line and drills the ball left-footed into the bottom corner from 18 yards.

2032: GOAL Man Utd 1-2 Aalborg
Well I never. Anders Due delivers the cross from the left and an unmarked Jeppe Curth is at the far post to head a delightful header into the opposite corner.

2031: HALF-TIME FC Porto 1-0 Arsenal

2031: Anders Due swings a free-kick past the Manchester United wall but Thomas Kuszczak makes the save.

2028: "Absolutely gutted Ben Foster isn't playing for United. The boy's a real talent who just needs top level experience under his belt. So why Fergie doesn't play him in games like this I just don't know. Anyone feel the same?"
Michael, Exeter, via text on 81111
Does seem very surprising...

2025: As it stands, Arsenal will finish second in their group behind Porto. That could mean a last 16 tie against Barcelona, Bayern Munich or Juventus.

2023: GOAL Lyon 0-3 Bayern Munich
Surely game, set and match to Bayern. Miroslav Klose nets his second of the night and his fifth in this season's Champions League to put the German side in total control. Even a draw would see them top the Group F.

2023: GOAL Porto 1-0 Arsenal
Porto have been on top in recent moments and this goal was coming. A corner is swung over from the right and with Abou Diaby daydreaming, Bruno Alves rises unchallenged to power a header downwards and into the Gunners net.

2021: RED CARD (Villarreal)
Guille Franco is sent off for elbowing Gary Caldwell - despite the Celtic man barely registering the contact. The linesman spots the offence, tells ref Claudio Circhetta and poor old Franco is off.

2020: GOAL Lyon 0-2 Bayern Munich
France's magic man Franck Ribery puts Bayern two up, and they are well on their way to topping this group. Happy days for Jurgen Klinnsman, who had a stuttering start to his reign at the German giants.

2016: GOAL Man Utd 1-1 Aalborg
That is a goal very much against the run of play ladies and gentlemen. Michael Jakobsen gets a faint touch with the back of his head on Martin Pederson's free-kick and the flight beats Thomas Kuszczak. Question mark over the keeper there. He got a hand to it, but couldn't keep it out.

2016: "Is Bendtner trying to be the Hulk by wearing them green boots, or is he just green with envy that every other striker is better than him?"
kristianowall on 606
Join the debate on 606

2012: Aaron Ramsey has Arsenal's first real shot on goal of the night in Portugal, the teenager's fierce left-foot drive parried away by Helton. The big news, though, is that Nicklas Bendtner has dispensed with his controversial pink boots, and switched to green instead.

2012: Moments ago, Celtic nearly got a second, Shaun Maloney's low right-wing cross just eluding the stretching Giorgios Samaras, who had escaped from his Villarreal marker.

2009: GOAL Real Madrid 1-0 Zenit
Another keeper blunder. This time it's Zenit's Vyacheslav Malafeev, who drops Rafael van der Vaart's cross right at Raul's feet and the striker bundles the ball home. Madrid now just need Juventus to start losing against BATE...

2008: GOAL Dynamo Kiev 1-0 Fenerbahce
Dynamo Kiev only need a point to qualify for the Uefa Cup but they're on their way to all three thanks to Roman Eremenko's 20th-minute goal.

2006: United look very, very comfortable at Old Trafford - and with Villarreal now losing, they are in complete control of Group E. Aalborg finished their league season at the weekend and look very much like a side looking forward to Christmas.

1959: GOAL Celtic 1-0 Villarreal
Disaster for the Spanish side. Keeper Sebastian Viera allows Mark Wilson's cross from the left to go through his hands and Shaun Maloney heads in from close range.

1957: GOAL Lyon 0-1 Bayern Munich
Miroslav Klose's right-foot strike means the Bundesliga giants will top that group ahead of the French champions as it stands.

1956: "Why oh why doesn't Tevez start every game? Proven goal scorer, hard worker, and quite the fox!"
Tom, Manchester, via text on 81111

1954: As it stands, United will finish top of their group. Villarreal would need to beat Celtic 3-0 to change that.

1953: Porto striker Hulk (I love writing that) is waving an imaginary yellow card after being clattered by Emmanuel Eboue. The Arsenal defender escapes punishment though.

1950: This could be embarrassing for Aalborg. Wayne Rooney is facing the wrong way but still manages to slide the pass across goal for Carlos Tevez, who should score but it goes wide.

1948: GOAL Man Utd 1-0 Aalborg
Lovely one-touch passing from United, and Ryan Giggs chips a brilliant ball over the top for Carlos Tevez, who stays just about onside to slot past keeper Karim Zaza.

1946: The final group games in Champions League 08/09 are under way.

1944: Not only is Sir Bobby Charlton at Old Trafford, so is Denis Law, another former Ballon d'Or winner. Lovely scenes. Sir Alex Ferguson looks on like a proud dad as Cristiano Ronaldo holds aloft the trophy.

1943: "Re 1936: That's the sort of support I want to see from fellow Arsenal fans. The stick he got at the weekend was disgusting."
George, London, via text on 81111

1940: If Celtic don't win tonight, it will mean no Scottish team has posted a victory in European football this season. Jeepers.

1937: Juande Ramos's first Real Madrid team does not feature Iker Casillas, Europe's fourth best player according to Ballon d'Or voters. He is replaced by ex-Liverpool keeper Jerzy Dudek in an otherwise strong line-up.

1936: After offering up a silent prayer, Arsenal defender Emmanuel Eboue turns to the visiting fans and applauds - and gets a decent reception.

1934: "Horrible Euro campaign for the Hoops this season. Looking for a good show tonight. Convince everyone we can still compete at this level. Glad to see Caldwell in his proper position!"
Stevo via text on 81111

1931: Cristiano Ronaldo may not be playing tonight, but he will be at Old Trafford to receive the Ballon d'Or trophy from Sir Bobby Charlton, who won the trophy in 1966. The gong returns to Old Trafford for the first time since 1968, when the late, great George Best won it.

1926: So Manchester United make wholesale changes. Rio Ferdinand and Wayne Rooney are the only survivors from the side that secured a last-gasp victory against Sunderland. Cristiano Ronaldo and Michael Carrick are not being risked after suffering respective hip and thigh injuries in that match, with a crucial Premier League game at Tottenham to come on Saturday, while former White Hart Lane star Dimitar Berbatov is also rested. Tomasz Kuszczak comes in for Edwin van der Sar in goal, while Gary Neville replaces Rafael.

1926: "Celtic very much have something to play for. First they must win and hope the Greek and Belgium teams still left in European competition fail sooner rather than later to guarantee Scotland remain in 12th position in Uefa standings and so achieving an automatic Champions League group stage place for 2010-11 for the winner of next year's SPL. Next year is assured due to Scotland's current 10th place."
santista02 on 606
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1924: "Gary Neville is nothing more than a back-up. Still a United legend but his last injury has really taken its toll on him. I love the bloke but I think it's time to step aside for the kids and I hope he accepts this with grace."
Stolen Hub Cap on 606
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1920: "Strange Gooners starting XI. Don't think that will get us a point we need. Hope Wenger proves me wrong."
Anon via text on 81111

1917: Celtic striker Scott McDonald drops to the bench, as does Glenn Loovens, while Cillian Sheridan is left out altogether. Shunsuke Nakamura and Aiden McGeady come in to the midfield while Shaun Maloney starts in attack alongside McDonald's replacement, Georgios Samaras. Villarreal, vying with Manchester United for top spot, make several changes but captain Marcos Senna does start in midfield.

1916: "Glad to see Gibson getting a start for United tonight. But I do hope we get to see Possebon at some point, as I think Anderson and Possebon would be brilliant together in the midfield. I hope Tevez proves a point or two today. For me he should be a starter ahead of Berbatov in most games."
Zippy, George and Bungle on 606
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1915: TEAMS Celtic v Villarreal
Celtic: Boruc, Hinkel, Caldwell, McManus, Wilson, Nakamura, Scott Brown, Hartley, McGeady, Maloney, Samaras. Subs: Mark Brown, McDonald, Loovens, Mizuno, O'Dea, Caddis, McGowan.
Villarreal: Viera, Angel, Fuentes, Rodriguez, Bruno, Cani, Senna, Edmilson, Fernandez, Franco, Ibagaza. Subs: Diego Lopez, Eguren, Pires, Santi Cazorla, Cygan, Nihat.

1913: Listen carefully because I won't say this again: the draw for the last 16 is at 1200 GMT on Friday 19 December. Teams from the same country cannot play each other. I will say it again. I'm only being dramatic.

1910: TEAMS Man Utd v AaB
Man Utd: Kuszczak, Neville, Ferdinand, Evans, O'Shea, Nani, Gibson, Anderson, Giggs, Rooney, Tevez. Subs: Foster, Park, Vidic, Scholes, Rafael Da Silva, Fletcher, Possebon.
AaB: Zaza, Bogelund, Olfers, Jakobsen, Pedersen, Curth, Enevoldsen, Augustinussen, Risgaard, Due, Saganowski. Subs: Kenneth Nielsen, Nomvethe, Caca, Braemer, Sorensen, Kristensen, Ronnie Schwartz Nielsen.

1909: And so does Emmanuel Eboue, after his Emirates nightmare on Saturday when he was mercilessly booed by the home fans and was replaced after coming on as a sub. He should feel a bit more comfortable tonight. He's playing away from home, and in his natural position of right-back.

1908: Hulk plays! Hurray!

1907: Arsenal make seven changes for their Group G clash at FC Porto, with Emmanuel Eboue, William Gallas, Mikael Silvestre, Aaron Ramsey, Abou Diaby, Carlos Vela and Nicklas Bendtner all recalled to the starting XI. Playmaker Lucho Gonzalez returns for Porto, who have Lisandro Lopez and Hulk up front.

1903: I'm all information tonight. Real Madrid, led for the first time by former Spurs boss Juande Ramos, need to beat Zenit to finish top - and hope Juventus lose at home to BATE. I don't hold out much hope for Madrid...

1859: TEAMS Porto v Arsenal
Porto: Helton, Fucile, Rolando, Alves, Emanuel, Gonzalez, Fernando, Meireles, Lopez, Hulk, Rodriguez. Subs: Nuno, Stepanov, Guarin, Mariano Gonzalez, Lino, Sektioui, Costa.
Arsenal: Almunia, Eboue, Gallas, Silvestre, Djourou, Ramsey, Diaby, Song, Denilson; Vela, Bendtner. Subs: Fabianski, Wilshere, Gibbs, Hoyte, Merida, Randall, Simpson.

1857: "Zenit to put more misery on Madrid by snatching a draw, and Villarreal to continue Celtic's poor European campaign by getting a win."
Ollie, Cirencester, via text on 81111

1855: Celtic are doomed whatever they do, I'm afraid.

1853: Manchester United host Aalborg, with a win guaranteeing them top spot - unless Villarreal beat Celtic by two more goals.

1851: Arsenal are at Porto tonight. They need a draw to finish top of Group G.

1845: And now, the end is here, and so I face the final... games of the 2008/9 Champions League group phase. Sniff. The last 16 teams might be decided - but there are seedings up for grabs tonight as well as a couple of Uefa Cup spots. Not only that, but the Ballon d'Or is at Old Trafford. And it's Juande Ramos's first game as Real Madrid manager to boot. Tasty.

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