Sportsday Live - reaction to the Champions League and Europa League draws, plus more.
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Sunderland manager Martin O'Neill
is considering the possibility of bringing striker Asamoah Gyan
, who at £13.8million represents the club's biggest signing, back from a loan spell in the United Arab Emirates. "Really, it's a matter of me introducing myself to him more than anything else and finding out how the land lies," said O'Neill. "In terms of the way the contract and deal has been structured, it may well be there's no chance of getting him back at that time...but still it'd be nice to have a few words."
Baseball home-run king Barry Bonds
has been sentenced to two years probation, 30 days house arrest and 250 hours of community service, with no prison time, for his conviction on a single criminal count related to an investigation over steroids use in sports. Bonds, 47, faced up to 21 months in federal prison for having given misleading testimony in front of a grand jury.
1946 AMERICAN FOOTBALL:
Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison's
appeal of a one-game suspension for a dangerous helmet-to-helmet hit on Cleveland Browns quarterback Colt McCoy has been denied, reports Reuters. As a result, Harrison will miss Monday's key game between the Steelers and the NFC West Division-leading San Francisco 49ers.
Spanish teenager Manuel Anon
was a surprise winner of London Olympia's Christmas Cracker class. The 19-year-old, who rode for Spain at the European Championships in Madrid earlier this year, guided Rackel Chavannaise to victory in a 13-horse jump off. "I thought I would go for it," said Anon. Peter Charles
led the British challenge, finishing fourth on Odie de Frevent.
1927 GET INVOLVED:
Craig Ellam on Twitter:
"#BBCsportsday Thinks football needs a disciplinary system like what rugby have. Everything Delt with in a couple of days Max."
Former France international and World Cup winner David Trezeguet
is on the verge of signing for River Plate to play in the second division of Argentine football, reports Associated Press. The 34-year-old former Juventus forward, who was born in France to Argentine parents, underwent medical tests in Buenos Aires on Friday prior to finalising the deal.
Saturday's 5 live Sport will feature an interview with Doncaster Rovers striker Billy Sharp
on how he has tried to come to terms with the death of his two-day old son Luey in October. The interview, with Mark Clemmit, will be broadcast at 1250 GMT. Ben Foster, Scott Sinclair, Ryan Nelsen, Karl Henry and Newcastle United's Ameobi brothers will also feature on the programme.
Five-time Olympic gold medallist Ian Thorpe
has finished 16th in the 100m freestyle at the Italian Winter Open in what was the Australian's first long course outing in six years. Thorpe clocked 50.84sec in an event won by Italy's Luca Dotto
(48.78sec). The 29-year-old retired in November 2006, but announced in February this year that he was returning to the pool with the target of competing in London 2012.
1847 FORMULA 1:
Red Bull design chief Adrian Newey
and team principal Christian Horner
talk to F1 commentary legend Murray Walker about
how their 2012 car is coming along, saying it is "just about" on schedule.
Horner praises Sebastian Vettel's dedication, hunger and desire, while Newey says the youngest ever double world champion is remarkably focused and adaptable, just like Ayrton Senna.
The Football Association have released a statement with regards the disciplinary hearing into claims Liverpool's Luis Suarez
racially abused Manchester United's Patrice Evra
. "The Independent Regulatory Commission has confirmed there will be no decision this evening and will continue working through the weekend. There will be no announcement on any decision before Tuesday 20 December at the earliest," said the statement.
1829 RUGBY UNION:
Leicester director of rugby Richard Cockerill
warned the Tigers must go for the kill in Saturday's Heineken Cup showdown with Clermont Auvergne
, who currently top the pool. Leicester
failed to take their chances against the French side last weekend and they crashed to a 30-12 defeat. "Last week's match was a tough, full-blooded encounter," said Cockerill ahead of the return fixture at Welford Road. "It was as intense as any international match and we cannot fall off from that level this week."
1822 FORMULA 1:
Argentina, which last hosted a Formula 1 race in 1998, could be back on the calendar from 2014 when a new track near the capital Buenos Aires, called the Velociudad Speedcity circuit,
Great Britain men's team football coach Stuart Pearce
on the Football Association's decision to ban players who play in Euro 2012 from competing in London 2012: "We have agreed that any player who boards the plane to the European Championship in Ukraine and Poland will not be considered for selection to Team GB," said Pearce. "It's a sensible football decision when you consider the demands on players, and it now leaves no room for doubt for players and their clubs about next summer and the two major tournaments."
The Croatian Tennis Federation says it turned down an offer from 2001 Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic
to become the country's Davis Cup captain due to financial reasons.
Australia's Big Bash Twenty20 tournament opened with a starring role from wicketkeeper Brad Haddin
as the Sydney Sixers beat Brisbane Heat by seven wickets at the Sydney Cricket Ground. Former Australian Test opener Matthew Hayden
made 29 off 28 balls for Brisbane. Meanwhile Shane Warne's
fiancee Elizabeth Hurley will toss the coin before the match between Melbourne Stars and Sydney Thunder on Saturday. Warne should play for the Stars despite burning his hand in a recent cooking accident.
1750 FORMULA ONE:
Boss Bernie Ecclestone
has admitted that
the sport "will not be big in America".
Formula 1 is due to return to the United States with a race in Texas in 2012, with a second race planned in New Jersey from 2013.
Denmark's Lotte Friss
tells BBC Sport
that she's aiming to break Rebecca Adlington's
heart at the next year's Olympics. She is Adlington's biggest challenger in the 800m freestyle and finished less than a second behind her at the 2011 World Championships.
Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho
remains defiant about his side's chances in three competitions this season, less than a week after a
home defeat to rivals Barcelona.
"We're close to ten out of ten," he said.
South Africa are in a strong position at the end of the second day of their
First Test against Sri Lanka
at Centurion. AB De Villiers
hit 99 as they reached 389-9 in response to the tourists' first innings total of 180.
1719 FOOTBALL: Fulham manager Martin Jol
tells Press Association Sport he will be shocked if Liverpool's Luis Suarez
is proved to have racially abused Patrice Evra. Jol worked with Suarez over an 18-month period during his time as Ajax manager.
1707 GET INVOLVED:
James Fox on Twitter:
"Mick McCarthy must have been the only Neutral that enjoyed Stoke play. So Anti-Football, thank god they are not on TV every week."
France and Bayern Munich midfielder Franck Ribery
has been ordered to pay his former agent 2.66m euros (£2.23m) in unpaid commissions, a Luxembourg prosecutor said on Friday. The sum concerned a contract with agent Bruno Heiderscheid dating back to 2005 when Ribery was playing for Marseille.
Following Stoke manager Tony Pulis's
support of Wolves boss Mick McCarthy
, McCarthy has returned the compliment ahead of the sides' meeting on Saturday. "They make the best of everything they've got," he said. "I admire and respect them for it. They play to their strengths. I was loving it at the game against Tottenham on Sunday, when the fans were singing 'we're Stoke, we'll play how we want'. I thought that was fantastic. I love that bloody-mindedness. And then they were singing 'two-nil to the rugby team' and 'Swing Low, Sweet Chariot'. It was class, I loved it."
1618 CRICKET: AB de Villiers
fell for 99 but still helped South Africa
389-9 and a commanding 209-run lead over Sri Lanka
on the second day of the first test at Centurion. De Villiers was caught by substitute fielder Dimuth Karunaratne off Thisara Perera one short of a 13th test century.
1615 FOOTBALL: Celtic chief executive Peter Lawwell
has hit out at the "rogue element" within the Hoops support who unveiled a banner which was derogatory in its sentiments towards Uefa during Thursday night's Europa League game against Udinese in Italy. A number of flares were also set alight and the club could face action from Uefa.
MK Dons boss Karl Robinson
tells BBC Three Counties Radio that
he will strive to keep loan stars
, from QPR, and Sheffield Wednesday's Angelo Balanta
in January, but admits it will be difficult.
1557 GET INVOLVED:
Yousuf Alghali on Twitter:
"Arsenal vs Milan is going to be a one sided affair. #AFC'll be too quick for Milan. Tie of the round'll be #CFC vs Napoli. #bbcsportsday"
Denver will look into bidding for the 2022 Winter Olympics. The US city was awarded the 1976 Winter Games by the International Olympic Committee but later turned them down.
1548 GET INVOLVED:
Dave 1 on Twitter:
"#bbcsportsday good result for force India Paul di resta and Nico hulkenberg both excellent drivers."
UEFA have not charged Harry Redknapp
Tottenham manager's gesture to Shamrock Rovers fans
during last night's Europa League game as the incident was not mentioned in the official reports, European football's governing body have confirmed.
1541 FORMULA ONE:
Sahara Force India team principal Vijay Mallya
is thrilled to sign Paul di Resta
and Nico Hulkenberg
for the 2012 season. "In Paul and Nico we have two extremely talented drivers with tremendous potential," he said.
Britain's rowers will face their first big test since September's World Championships when they
compete at the British winter assessment
tomorrow. Known as the Boston Trials - and described by Britain's top single sculler Alan Campbell
as "where it all begins for the Olympics" - it aims to test endurance and fitness rather than power, speed and race finesse.
Pakistan and Afghanistan will play their first ever one-day international cricket match in Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates next February.
1525 FORMULA ONE:
Sahara Force India have confirmed Germany's Nico Hulkenberg
will join Scotland's Paul di Resta
in its racing driver line-up for the 2012 season.
1519 GET INVOLVED:
Ben Brodie on Twitter:
"Prediction: Chels buy Cavani in Jan for huge sum simply so he can't score against us... Why does that ring a bell... #bbcsportsday"
1516 FORMULA ONE:
Silverstone gets outline planning permission for its 20-year masterplan by Aylesbury Vale District and South Northamptonshire Councils. The circuit can now push ahead with development of new facilities that include a business park, technology park, education campus, three hotels, a welcome centre and museum of motorsport.
Everton manager David Moyes
admits he has "a spring in his step" after the loan signing of Landon Donovan
and teenager Ross Barkley's
decision to sign a new long-term contract. "Hopefully it filters through to the supporters and they are much happier and have something to talk about and look forward to," he said.
Napoli president and film director Aurelio De Laurentiis
calls on fans to flock to Stamford Bridge for their
Champions League last 16 with Chelsea.
"They are going to be great nights and I dream there will be many Neapolitans heading to London to back us," he said.
World champion Sarah Stevenson
might have taken the headlines in 2011 but her GB Taekwondo team-mate Martin Stamper
won the sport's Olympic Athlete of the Year Award.
The 25-year-old from Liverpool claimed -68kg titles in the US, German and French Opens as well as taking world silver in Korea. "I am so proud to win the athlete of the year award because the team has done so well and there have been some great performances from other GB athletes," said Stamper.
QPR manager Neil Warnock
says Keiron Dyer's
latest injury setback
is "a devastating blow." He said: "I have never met a more determined pro in my career. He really doesn't deserve this."
Bayer Leverkusen sporting director Rudi Voeller
is delighted to draw holders Barcelona in the last 16 of the Champions League. "Both for our fans and young players, this is a dream draw. Everyone must play their best and Barcelona could have a bad day."
1447 GET INVOLVED:
Football fan Phil Jones on Twitter:
"Christmas is a time for family and friends, for giving and receiving and most importantly; FOOTBALL!!!! Merry Christmas #bbcsportsday."
1441 CRICKET: Derek Brewer
will be the next chief executive of Marylebone Cricket Club - the guardian of the laws and spirit of the game. Brewer, who has been the chief executive at Nottinghamshire for the last six years, will lead the redevelopment of Lord's.
US Teenager Alexis Thompson
holds a one-shot lead going into the final day of the Dubai Ladies Masters. The 16-year-old, who is aiming to become the second youngest winner ever on the European Tour, said: "Sure, I will be a bit nervous tomorrow, who won't be? But hopefully, I will keep my focus, take it one hole at a time and win this. If I do, it will be very cool."
Spanish police say they have broken up a doping ring that allegedly supplied athletes with illegal performance-enhancing drugs in addition to dealing narcotics. Raids in Valencia, Cantabria, Sevilla and Barcelona led to the arrest of 18 people and the confiscation of thousands of doses of doping substances, including anabolic steroids and growth hormones.
Fulham striker Bobby Zamora
faces a late fitness test ahead of Saturday's Premier League clash with Bolton. The 30-year-old has an issue with his left knee and will be assessed on Saturday morning. Midfielders Simon Davies
(back) and Steve Sidwell
(hernia) as well as goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer
(spine) will definitely miss out.
1420 GET INVOLVED:
Kevin Bickle on Twitter:
"Just when sunderland need stability the off field problems bringing club into disrepute. O'Neill needs to sort discipline #bbcsportsday."
Stoke boss Tony Pulis
has hit out at the section of Wolves fans calling for the head of manager Mick McCarthy
. Wolves, who face Stoke on Saturday, sit one place and two points above the relegation zone. "At every football club there's always a section of supporters who are never going to be happy," said Pulis. "What hopefully Mick has got is a chairman who is sensible and recognises that there will always be people out there who want more.
Blackburn boss Steve Kean
has confirmed he sought immediate reassurances from the club's owner this week that there will be no problems with paying the players' wages. A report at the weekend claimed Venky's, the Indian owners of Blackburn, had received a demand from Barclays bank for £10million to help to pay off the club's debts and that they could struggle to pay salaries in January.
I sense the reaction to these draws rumbling on and on, probably until the first Champions League last-16 ball is kicked in anger on 14 February. What a Valentine's Day that promises to be. This page will now revert to it's usual Sportsday Live guise, with all the latest sports news coming your way. The BBC footy team return on Saturday, with six Premier League games to feast on. Thanks for all your contributions, fun times. For now,
jasonwcullen on Twitter:
"So the 'Channel 5 Cup' might not be a waste of an evening after all! Some better games in EL than in CL draw!"
Joe, Aberdeen, via text on 81111:
"Re Ben in St Neots and Paul in Leicester - you're both wrong. Seeding of the CL teams was based on their performance in the group. City had 10pts, United & Olympiakos 9, and Valencia pipped Porto and Ajax - all of whom had 8. This shows how tough City and United's draws are!"
In case you missed it... Sunderland midfielder Lee Cattermole
and striker Nicklas Bendtner
arrested after cars were damaged
in Newcastle city centre. The pair were held in relation to an incident in Stowell Street on 6 December. They were later bailed pending further inquiries.
r7b_ on Twitter:
"Would have loved United to have Van der Sar, just so he could face Ajax. But if we had him, we probably wouldn't have been in Europa League!"
MANCHESTER UNITED CLUB SECRETARY JOHN ALEXANDER:
"To have two top teams who are former champions, it really is a top tie. We go into all competitions to win them and we like that regularity of midweek and weekend matches. I think it is a fantastic tie for the competition. Hopefully we'll get two great stadiums filled to capacity, so it should be a good night for the Europa League. Hopefully we'll be successful and that will give us a trip to Moscow which will bring back memories of our last Champions League triumph."
Many of you feel today's draws illustrate the oft-derided strength of Uefa's top club competitions. That said, you're all backing your teams to advance. Anyone up for Chelsea v Arsenal and Man United v Man City in the two finals? Stoke will have something to say about that. Precious little talk about Barcelona, Real Madrid, Inter Milan, Bayern Munich, Udinese, Lazio and Atletico Madrid. To name but a few. Mouth-watering few months in store.
MANCHESTER UNITED DEFENDER CHRIS SMALLING:
"It was a massive disappointment going out of the Champions League, but look at the calibre of teams that are in the Europa League. We've drawn Ajax and they have a lot of history. That will be a good test. A lot of the teams will be keen to do well. Whoever wins the competition will be a good team."
AJAX COMMERCIAL DIRECTOR HENRI VAN DER ART:
"For our fans it is a fantastic match. It will be a very motivated Manchester United side to show the world they can win the Europa League. There are two famous teams who respect each other. Both teams should have been in the Champions League but it helps the Europa League to have these kind of high-profile games. There is always a way past for us, we have a very good team. We'd like to win the Europa League, it is a very important competition."
MANCHESTER UNITED MANAGER SIR ALEX FERGUSON:
"Ajax are a good team and I've never faced them in competitive European football. I'm looking forward to it."
Andy, Gretna, via text on 81111:
"Re Ben, it's actually simply to do with performance in this season's CL. The best four performing teams were seeded (Utd, City, Valencia + Olympiakos). Porto simply didn't get enough points in their group!"
tim_beddoes on Twitter:
"You expect great match-ups at this stage of the CL, but the some of the Europa ties are sensational!"
Europa League fixture news... all first legs to be played on 16 February
, with second legs a week later on 23 February
. Final schedules - kick-off times etc - still to be confirmed.
Paul, Leicester, via text on 81111:
"Re Ben, St Neots: the reason City will be seeded and not Porto is less about the team themselves, and more about England's much higher Uefa coefficient than Portugal's. The country element is a significant portion of any team's overall coefficient."
And some more... CHELSEA v NAPOLI
- 21 FEBRUARY, 1945 GMT, STADIO SAN PAOLO
and then CHELSEA v NAPOLI
- 14 MARCH, 1945 GMT, STAMFORD BRIDGE
Right then. We're starting to get some confirmed dates through... AC MILAN v ARSENAL
- 15 FEBRUARY, 1945 GMT, SAN SIRO
and then ARSENAL v AC MILAN
- 6 MARCH, 1945 GMT, EMIRATES STADIUM
If you're wondering how the fixtures will work for the two Manchester clubs, it's expected that City would have to alter their schedule because United have a superior Uefa co-efficient ranking. In the round of 32, City may play on the Wednesday at 1700 or 1800 GMT rather than the Thursday when United would be in action. For the last 16, United and City have not been drawn at home in the same leg, so all matches would be scheduled for Thursdays.
On Carlos Tevez
, Marwood adds: "Our position hasn't changed. Milan came to us with a loan option which we rejected and that stays the same. Clearly Milan have decided to conduct their business through the media, that is something we decide not to do. Carlos Tevez remains a Man City player. He has made his desire to leave the club, we have gone on record to say that we will consider it. We will see what the next three or four weeks brings."
MANCHESTER CITY FOOTBALL ADMINISTRATOR BRIAN MARWOOD:
"It's amazing. We've gone through the hardest group in the Champions League and now got the holders of the Europa League. It's a big game for the club and we'll be taking it seriously as Roberto Mancini said. It is a busy schedule but we haven't had to do the early rounds. We look forward to it, Porto are very attractive opposition. Maybe we can give Chelsea info about Napoli and they can help us out about Porto. We have a lot of fixtures over the next three months but we are all excited about it. We may have to play at 6pm on a Wednesday night which is difficult for fans who have to go to work but they are the rules which are imposed upon us. People talk disparagingly about this competition but we are not looking at it that way."
Dan_beecham on Twitter:
"What a draw! All the English clubs face established CHAMPIONS LEAGUE clubs in the Europa League. It's gonna be something special!!"
So, in the Europa League Manchester United
draw fellow European football giants Ajax
, Manchester City
get defending champions Porto
are paired with Spanish big guns Valencia
. That coming after that Champions League draw pits Chelsea
against in-form Napoli
with AC Milan
. Keep the reaction rolling by
tweeting me @bbcsport_david
using the hashtag
or texting in via 81111 (UK)
Ben, St Neots, via text on 81111:
"Looking at the draw and seedings, how can Porto as defending champions and fallen out of the CL not be seeded and City, who lost in the Europa League to Kiev last year and also knocked out of CL, be seeded? Something's not right there. Porto and I would guess maybe Ajax must have a higher coefficient that City? Anyone explain that to me..."
James, a very excited Stoke fan, via text on 81111:
"Conversation on the way home tonight: ' Dad, can I go to Valencia, dad can I go to Valencia, it'll be the best birthday present ever and so on..."
v LOKOMOTIV MOSCOW/ATHLETIC BILBAO
v TRABZONSPOR/PSV EINDHOVEN
WISLA KRAKOW/STANDARD LIEGE
v VIKTORIA PLZEN/SCHALKE
LEGIA WARSAW /SPORTING LISBON
v PORTO/MANCHESTER CITY
v RUBIN KAZAN/OLYMPIAKOS
Still with us? Good. Now for the last-16 draw...
Opta Sports on Twitter:
"0 - Stoke's opponents Valencia have won none of their last eight European games against English opponents. Rule."
LEGIA WARSAW v SPORTING LISBON TRABZONSPOR v PSV EINDHOVEN WISLA KRAKOW v STANDARD LIEGE
Vic, London, via text on 81111:
"Wow, it appears all five English teams received the toughest possible draws!"
STEAUA BUCHAREST v TWENTE
tef90 on Twitter:
"Not sure Valencia will be relishing a trip to the Britannia Stadium."
BenjaminEdmonds on Twitter:
"Both Manchester teams have ties as hard as some of the Champions League ties, testament to quality of Europa League."
SALZBURG V METALIST KHARKIV LOKOMOTIV MOSCOW v ATHLETIC BILBAO 1217:
The capsule won't open!
The draw for the last 16 on 8 and 15 March follows and there are no seeded teams. The 16 balls containing slips of paper for 'Winners of match 1' to 'Winners of match 16' are placed in one bowl and shuffled. The first team drawn are to play their first match at home against the second team drawn and the same procedure is then repeated for the other matches. There are no restrictions on the last-16 draw.
There will be two pots for the last-32 draw: the 12 group winners and the four best third-ranked teams in the Champions League group stage will be drawn against the 12 group runners-up and the remaining third-placed Champions League sides. In the games on 16 and 23 February, no team can play a club from their group or a side from the same association.
Unseeded teams... Rubin Kazan, Hannover, Legia Warsaw, Lazio, Stoke City, Salzburg, AZ Alkmaar, Braga, Udinese, Steaua Bucharest, Wisla Krakow, Lokomotiv Moscow, Trabzonspor*, Ajax*, FC Porto*, Viktoria Plzen*.*Transferred from the Champions League
Seeded teams... PAOK, Standard Liege, PSV Eindhoven, Sporting Lisbon, Besiktas, Atletico Bilbao, Metalist Kharkiv, Club Brugge, Atletico Madrid, Schalke, Twente, Anderlecht, Manchester City*, Manchester United*, Valencia*, Olympiacos*.*Transferred from the Champions League
And you thought that was it. You thought you could get back to work, pop the kettle on, forget about football for a few hours. Well, think again. You're going nowhere. Time for the Europa League last-32 and last-16 draws
. Merry Christmas indeed.
Gandini confirms the offer made by AC Milan for Manchester City striker Carlos Tevez
. "City are considering that," he says. "Tevez has expressed his interest, other clubs are interested and now we wait. There is an opportunity, we are bidding, we think the player has a desire to join AC Milan but it is up to City to decide."
AC MILAN DIRECTOR UMBERTO GANDINI:
"Tie of the round. For the quality and the appeal of the two clubs it is a fantastic tie. Last time we lost 2-0 to Arsenal at the San Siro and we were knocked out by Tottenham last year. We are determined to go through. Last year we had lots of injuries but right now we are in a better status than Arsenal. But lots can change in two months. They have a great player in Robin van Persie and Arsene Wenger is a great coach."
Opta Sports on Twitter:
"Arsenal have won both Champions League games they have played in the San Siro, 5-1 v Inter and 2-0 v Milan. Confident."
Worth pointing out that AC Milan have fallen to English clubs at the last-16 stage in each of their last three campaigns.
CHELSEA CLUB SECRETARY DAVID BARNARD:
"It will be difficult. Napoli were in the same group as Man City and Man City are unfortunately no longer with us so that has some bearing on quality of Napoli. We all know that [Chelsea boss] Andre [Villas-Boas] has experience with Inter [Milan] so he will know the ins and outs of Napoli I'm sure. It will be an occasion. It will be a lot warmer, too as we could have got a Russian team where it would have been colder."
Manners_A on Twitter:
"Arsenal and Chelsea playing away first could be what saves them! Very tough games!"
TShow77 on Twitter:
"Conspiracy Theory!!! The 2 London clubs have the toughest possible ties in the knockout round."
ARSENAL CLUB SECRETARY DAVID MILES:
"It's probably the pick of the round. They'll be two fantastic games. If I'm being honest, there are some other teams I would have preferred. Last time we played them in season 07-08, we actually went through after winning 2-0 in the San Siro so our recent history against them is good."
Arsenal club secretary David Miles says his side's double-header against AC Milan will be the "tie of the round". He admits the Gunners would have preferred to avoid Milan but points out that they
eliminated the Italian giants in 2008.
And that concludes the 2011-12 Champions League last-16 draw. Lyon v Apoel, Napoli v Chelsea, AC Milan v Arsenal, Basel v Bayern Munich, Bayer Leverkusen v Barcelona, CSKA Moscow v Real Madrid, Zenit St Petersburg v Benfica, Marseille v Inter Milan.
ZENIT ST PETERSBURG v BENFICA CSKA MOSCOW v REAL MADRID BAYER LEVERKUSEN v BARCELONA Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger:
"You cannot avoid anybody. You would say Basel but they were a very difficult opponent for Manchester United. So you take the draw as it comes, analyse it and plan for the game. The Italian teams have a history but you don't know how it will go."
A warm welcome to the stage for Paul Breitner
- ambassador for the 2012 Champions League final in Munich - and Uefa director of competitions Giorgio Marchetti
. Nervous faces all round the 'House of European Football' auditorium in Nyon. Not long now...
Here it is. Here HE is. Uefa general secretary Gianni Infantino
, aka Champions League drawmaster. Gianni reminds us that the draw for the remainder of the competition will be held on 16 March
and the tournament concludes in Munich on 19 May
. Bayern Munich
are looking to become the first team to play a European Cup final in their own stadium since AS Roma
For info, seeded group winners (Bayern Munich, Inter Milan, Benfica, Real Madrid, Chelsea, Arsenal, Apoel, Barcelona) will be away in the first legs on 14-15 and 21-22 February and at home in the return matches on 6-7 and 13-14 March. No team can play a club from their group or any side from the same association
A couple of technical glitches sorted. We're auto-refreshing as normal. Just in time, folks, just in time. The draw is upon us. Keep glued to this page for instant news of your team's last-16 opponent. And keep the chat coming
using the Twitter
or send an SMS on 81111 (UK)
drolbor on Twitter:
"Got a feeling both London clubs will be travelling east to play CSKA and Zenit. Abramovich and Usmanov may feel at home!"
Talking of Arsenal
, good news about Jack Wilshere
from manager Arsene Wenger
. He says the midfielder had an "exceptionally good"
scan on Thursday and it is hoped he will return to first-team action in February.
Cameron via text on 81111:
"I don't understand all the Arsenal fans that think Milan would he fine because we beat them before. They're a different machine now, with Ibra, Pato and Robinho..."
Back to the draw and it's worth mentioning that the lineup contains seven past European Cup winners
as well as four teams new to the knockout stage
. Real Madrid, Barcelona, Bayern Munich, AC Milan, Inter Milan, Marseille
have all lifted the trophy, while Basel, Napoli, Zenit St Petersburg
have never been so far. In fact, Apoel are the first Cypriot representatives to reach this phase.
Opta Sports on Twitter:
"Arsenal, Chelsea, Lyon & Real Madrid are the only sides who have reached the CL last 16 in every season since new format in 03/04. Draw."
sahil_KTBFFH on Twitter:
"Barcelona vs Napoli would be very interesting, considering Napoli's counter attacking prowess."
can play Napoli, CSKA Moscow, Basel, Lyon, Bayer Leverkusen, Zenit St Petersburg
or AC Milan
. They reached the last-16 in 2010
and this is their 14th straight season
in the Champions League, with a best finish as runners-up
has4arsenal on Twitter:
"Arsenal have beaten AC Milan in the past. I would like to avoid Russia or Napoli. They will be tough to beat but we should be fine
can play Napoli, CSKA Moscow, Basel, Lyon, Marseille, Zenit St Petersburg,
or AC Milan
. Last season, they reached the quarter-finals
. This is their 10th straight season
in the competition and their best finish is runners-up
Matt via text on 81111:
"Looking at the teams in the CL draw, the London teams will fancy their chances this year. Praying the Blues avoid Milan and can sneak a draw against Basel or Apoel."
EssexJames on Twitter:
"Is the actual draw at 11, or do we get all the speeches, music, celebrity fawning and other frippery first?"Pop and regalia from 11, then comes the draw.
As mentioned, Uefa's Swiss HQ in Nyon play host to this event. The draws will be conducted by general secretary Gianni Infantino
and director of competitions Giorgio Marchetti
, assisted by ambassadors for the 2012 finals in Munich and Bucharest, Paul Breitner
for the Champions League and Miodrag Belodedici
for the Europa League. No World Cup draw celebs like
Charlize Theron, David Beckham and Haile Gebreselassie,
The Champions League draw is scheduled to start at 1100 GMT
. It'll be followed by the Europa League last-32 and last-16 draws
at 1200 GMT
. The first one will concern Chelsea
fans, the second Manchester United
, Manchester City
and Stoke City
supporters. But wherever your allegiances lie, I want to be hearing from you. So,
tweet me @bbcsport_david
using the hashtag
or pop us a text message on 81111 (UK)
If I could kindly ask you to manually refresh this page, you'll be able to see a name at the top and some lovely graphics on the indexes. Sorted? Thanks. Now then, let's turn our attention to Nyon and those mini Champions League footballs in the glass bowls.
Snow is falling across the UK but for Chelsea
a white Christmas is far less important than a kind Champions League last-16 draw
. Welcome to BBC Sport's live coverage of that all-important date on the football calendar.
0939 GET INVOLVED:
Hassan Mohammed on Twitter:
"Chelsea to avoid Basel, just for the amount of stick we'd get from UTD fans if we did lose!"
0937 GET INVOLVED:
Jonathan Merrick on Twitter:
"I would love [Arsenal to get] Napoli for selfish reasons or Basel for easier opposition #afc #ChampionsLeague"
0930 GET INVOLVED:
Mohamed Ali on Twitter:
"I would like [Chelsea] to get Basel and show United how to do the Business as we did to Valencia! #cfc"
0918 GET INVOLVED:
BBC Sport's Howard Nurse on Twitter:
"Jonjo Shelvey is the November Young Player of the Month after scoring four times for Blackpool before being recalled by Liverpool."
0914 FOOTBALL: David Luiz
returns from suspension for Chelsea's Premier League game at Wigan on Saturday. The defender sat out Monday night's
victory over Manchester City
after picking up his fifth domestic booking of the season. Midfielder Michael Essien is on course to return from knee surgery in a month's time.
0910 FOOTBALL: Wolves
have slight injury concerns over winger Matt Jarvis and midfielder Dave Edwards ahead of Saturday's
derby with Stoke at Molineux. Jarvis has a thigh problem and Edwards a sore groin, but manager Mick McCarthy is hopeful both will be fit. Defender Jody Craddock (hamstring) and defender Kevin Foley (ankle) are unlikely to be available.
0904 FOOTBALL: Bolton
striker Ivan Klasnic is fit for Saturday's
trip to Fulham after recovering from a knee injury. Defender David Wheater is unavailable again as he serves the third game of a four-match ban.
0858 FOOTBALL: Celtic
should discover today if they are to face any action from Uefa after a flare was thrown from the section of the ground holding Hoops fans before
Thursday's Europa League draw with Udinese
at the Stadio Friuli. A Uefa spokesman said: "We expect to receive reports from the referee and the match official today or tomorrow at the latest.
Play resumes on the second day of the
first Test at Centurion.
South Africa, 90-1 in response to Sri Lanka's 180, lose nightwatchman Dale Steyn early.
0835 BASEBALL: Barry Bonds
is facing a sentencing range of probation to 21 months in prison for his
obstruction of justice conviction.
US District Judge Susan Illston is scheduled to sentence the Major League Baseball all-time home-run leader on Friday. The federal probation department is recommending Bonds receive probation, a term of house arrest and community service. Prosecutors are asking for a 15-month prison sentence.
0828 AMERICAN FOOTBALL: The Atlanta Falcons
have little difficulty
dispatching Jacksonville Jaguars 41-14 at the Georgia Dome
to keep their pursuit of a play-off place on track. The Falcons improved to 9-5 and moved ahead of the Detroit Lions in the hunt for an NFC post-season spot, while the Jaguars fell to 4-10.
0823 FOOTBALL: Newcastle boss Alan Pardew
will make late decisions over a trio of players as he attempts to bolster his options for
Saturday's Premier League clash with Swansea.
Skipper Fabricio Coloccini (thigh), fellow central defender Mike Williamson (ankle) and midfielder Cheick Tiote (knee) will all be assessed on Friday before Pardew names his team. Midfielder Dan Gosling is suspended following his sending-off at Norwich last weekend, while Steven Taylor (Achilles) and Danny Guthrie (groin) remain on the injured list.
0818 GET INVOLVED:
BBC Wales' Steffan Garrero on Twitter:
"So Hansen follows Henry into the top job at the All Blacks. Following this pattern I look forward to the Gareth Jenkins years coming soon..."
0810 CRICKET: India's Sachin Tendulkar
sounds a warning to Australia's depleted bowling attack by hitting a stylish 92 before retiring in India's drawn tour match against a Cricket Australia Chairman's XI. The two-day match ended prematurely because of rain in Canberra with India on 320-6 in reply to the Chairman's XI's 398-6 declared.
Tendulkar is one short
of becoming the first man to score 100 international centuries.
0805 GOLF: England's Ian Poulter
birdies the final two holes for a three-under-par 68 and a two-stroke lead after
the second round of the Australian Masters.
Australia's Matthew Giles is in second place after a 68, top-ranked Luke Donald is three under after a 70.
- Don't forget you can share your thoughts on the latest sporting issues. Get involved on Sportsday Live on Twitter with the hashtag
Good morning and welcome to Sportsday Live. We start with the top three stories from
Friday's gossip column.
are considering making a move for Napoli and Uruguay striker Edinson Cavani. (talkSPORT).
Didier Drogba and Frank Lampard are determined to leave Chelsea
in January (The Sun).
Serie A leaders Juventus
are eager to buy Manchester United winger Antonio Valencia in January. (Daily Mirror)