Beckham set for Old Trafford return

England player could face Man Utd for first time since 2003 after Champs League draw.

    Beckham hasn't played against United since leaving in 2003 [GALLO/GETTY]
    David Beckham could face Manchester United for the first time since leaving the club in 2003 after the English Champions were paired with AC Milan in the knockout rounds of the European Champions League.

    Jose Mourinho will return to his former club Chelsea after his Inter Milan side were paired with the Londoners in Friday's last-16 draw.

    Karim Benzema will say hello to his old teammates when Real Madrid take on Lyon, while current champions Barcelona take on Stuttgart.

    French champions Bordeaux play Olympiakos, Bayern Munich take on Fiorentina, 2004 winners Porto face Arsenal and CSKA Moscow play Sevilla.

    The first-leg ties will be played in February with the second legs in March.

    England international Beckham is set to return to AC Milan in January for a second stint on loan from LA Galaxy.

    He had said earlier this week that he wanted to play against United.

    Seven-year itch

    "Seven years have gone by and I want it to happen," Beckham, who helped United win the Champions League in 1999, told Gazzetta dello Sport.

    Last 16 draw

     Stuttgart v Barcelona
     Olympiakos v Bordeaux
     Inter Milan v Chelsea
     Bayern Munich v Fiorentina
     CSKA Moscow v Sevilla
     Lyon v Real Madrid
     Porto v Arsenal
     AC Milan v Man Utd

    Ties to be played Feb 16/17 & 23/24, and March 9/10 & 16/17

    "Me against United, great, no?"

    Lyon chairman Jean-Michel Aulas told Eurosport that Real were "the best team in the world."

    "It's a privilege to play against Real Madrid," he said.

    "We played them four times and never lost, winning twice and drawing twice.

    "We will not be the favourites but playing the best team in the world is a fantastic opportunity. Anything can happen. We must make sure we have no regrets.

    "It's also great to meet Karim Benzema. I wish him a happy birthday –  I think it's tomorrow. He's an exceptional player and a charming young man."

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera


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