Chelsea, Barcelona drawn into same group in Champions League




 
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August 25th, 2006  
Team Infidel
 
 

Topic: Chelsea, Barcelona drawn into same group in Champions League


Chelsea, Barcelona drawn into same group in Champions League
Chelsea and Champions League holders Barcelona are to renew their rivalry after they were drawn together in the first phase of this year's competition on Thursday.
The two sides, who have now been paired for the third time in three years, also face Werder Bremen and Levski Sofia.
Last year's finalists Arsenal take on Porto, CSKA Moscow and Hamburg while Liverpool face PSV Eindhoven, Bordeaux and Galatasaray. Manchester United will meet Celtic in Group F with Benfica and FC Copenhagen.
AC Milan, who were found guilty in the probe into match-fixing in Italian Serie A but were re-instated on appeal, are with Lille, AEK Athens and Anderlecht.
One of the toughest groups looks to be Group B, which sees Inter Milan, Bayern Munich, Sporting Lisbon and Spartak Moscow.
Chelsea and Barcelona have had acrimonious clashes over the past two seasons - with both teams taking a win each.
The Premiership champions beat Barcelona 5-4 on aggregate in the first knockout stage in February 2005.
But the tie was overshadowed by Blues boss Jose Mourinho claiming Barcelona counterpart Frank Rijkaard visited referee Anders Frisk's dressing room at half-time of the first leg.
They then clashed again last season with Barcelona going through after securing a 3-2 aggregate victory.
But again there was bad blood after Chelsea accused Lionel Messi of over-reacting to a challenge by Asier del Horno, which led to the Blues full-back being sent off.
Chelsea chief executive Peter Kenyon says he wants to move on from the recent controversy.
"We have a great respect for them and we have a good relationship with them and I hope people concentrate on the football," he said. "We have to move on from what has gone on before.
"This is what the Champions League is about at the end of the day. Fans want to see us against the big teams and they don't come much bigger than Barcelona.
"We shouldn't overlook the other sides in there. Werder Bremen have had a good start to the season. It's a big group."

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