Real Madrid, who began this season with
high hopes of winning the European Cup for the 10th time, will need to
show some real class against Dynamo Kiev on Tuesday if they are to keep
that dream alive.
Real resume their Champions League campaign after a three-week break in
third place in Group B following a 3-0 defeat at Bayer Leverkusen and a
4-2 win over AS Roma.
They face a Dynamo side that will just about seal their place in the
next round if they beat Real at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium and take
their tally to nine points from three games.
Dynamo arrive in Spain having won both of their opening matches against
Roma and Leverkusen and will be no pushovers for Real, who have only
found their true form once this season when they came back from 0-2 down
to beat Roma on September 29.
Real were held to a 1-1 draw at Real Betis on Saturday in the Primera
Liga after another largely mediocre display and a similar performance
might be very costly against the Ukrainians.
Manchester United, who also started this campaign with high hopes, visit
Sparta Prague as Group D leaders after their emphatic 6-2 win over
Fenerbahce three weeks ago.
United will be looking to return with all three points from the Czech
champions who have lost their opening two matches.
But United will need to improve on Saturday's uninspiring 0-0 draw with
Birmingham City in the Premier League -- although they will find their
former player Karel Poborsky keen to stop them in their tracks.
History, of sorts will be made in Turin where Juventus and Bayern Munich,
who have played a combined total of more than 600 European matches
between them since the 1950s and won 18 major trophies between them
including the World Club Cup meet for the first time ever in European
Juve go into the game in good spirits after establishing a clear lead in
Serie A at the weekend with a 2-1 win over Messina, while Bayern are
looking to bounce back from a 1-0 home defeat to Schalke 04 in the
Both have started well in the Champions League with two wins from two
matches and a third victory for one or the other will almost certainly
see them book a place in the next round.