Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Champions League Preview Central

With less than 24 hours to go until kickoff in Moscow, there's no shortage of storylines. I'll leave the analysis to the experts, but here's a look at the headlines for tomorrow's Champions League Final.

With Drogba and Terry already banged up, the last thing Chelsea needed was another injury. It looks like Ashley Cole will be okay, but The Telegraph has all the images from Cole's practice collision with teammate Claude Makelele

Could this be Avaram Grant's last game as Chelsea head coach? The BBC has the story of a man who has accomplished much but apparently still has much to prove.

This could also be the Chelsea farewell for Frank Lampard, who's been linked with a move to Inter Milan. As you'd expect, Lampard downplayed the rumors , but didn't dismiss them completely.

The Independent has a look at the enigma that is Didier Drogba.

Will John Terry be hoisting the trophy tomorrow night? Sky Sports shares the story of what fuels Chelsea's captain.

Manchester United
The Times reports that Wayne Rooney is ready to erase some bad memories of Moscow.

Sir Alex Ferguson will take your foolish wagers on Cristiano Ronaldo returning to Old Trafford next year. In today's Guardian, the ManU boss says his Portugese star isn't heading anywhere.

Speaking of Ronaldo, tomorrow's game will go a long way towards validating his lofty claims of being the world's best, according to The Telegraph.

Nine years after Manchester's last appearance in a Champions League Final, Paul Scholes is finally reading to take to the pitch in Europe's biggest game.

Around Moscow
Those red shirts fit perfectly in downtown Moscow. The Independent has the story of the biggest English invasion to hit Russia since, well, ever.

UEFA Chief Michel Platini has no worries about the pitch for the big game. Of course, he hasn't seen it yet, according to The Guardian.

I'm looking forward to taking the afternoon off from work and heading to my favorite Chicago soccer bar, Fado, to watch the game. With concerns about the playing surface and the familiarity these teams have with one another, scoring will be at a premium. I think we're headed for a 1-1 draw and the cruel lottery of penalty kicks. What happens then? Your guess is as good as mine.

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