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Basel plan to brush Manchester United out of Champions League

By Steven Beacom

Basel coach Heiko Vogel today declared he is relishing his side’s crunch Champions League clash with Manchester United next month.

When the draw for the group stages was made few would have thought Sir Alex Ferguson’s team would have needed a point from their final game in Switzerland to qualify for the last 16.

But after last night’s disappointing 2-2 draw at home to Benfica and Basel’s 3-2 win in Romania against Otelul Galati, that is the task facing Sir Alex Ferguson’s side on December 7.

The bottom line is that if United lose they will be playing Europa League football with Basel going through to the knockout phase with the likes of Real Madrid and Barcelona.

Vogel said: “Despite having to win against Manchester United now, it is simply great that there will be this duel at St. Jakob-Park. That's what we have been working torwards and we will look forward to that match. It will be a big night for everyone involved with the club.”

While Basel and United are effectively involved in a play-off, Inter Milan made it through to the last 16 with a 1-1 draw in Trabzonspor and Real Madrid continued their excellent recent form with a 6-1 victory over Dinamo Zagreb at the Bernabeu. No-one will want to meet them in the next round.

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