Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE INTERVIEW

Turkish troops to go further into Syria, says foreign minister

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Court ruling expected on Gabon's contested election results

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Clinton's Comedy Turn

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

Sarkozy's Populist Pivot, Bahamas Leaks, Syria Truce, Rome Olympic Bid (Part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

US Police Shootings: Race relations and the race to the White House (Part 1)

Read more

#TECH 24

Breaking the wall between technology and people

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Rural France: Challenges and opportunities

Read more

REPORTERS

Video: In Burma, ex-political prisoners struggle to return to normal life

Read more

ENCORE!

Xavier Dolan: Wunderkind of Québecquois cinema

Read more

Sports

Barcelona fear Real Madrid’s fate ahead of Stuttgart game

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2010-03-17

Title holders Barcelona are set to play Stuttgart for a place in the quarter finals tonight. Having drawn away (1-1) against the German club, Pep Guardiola's team have the edge. However, the shock exit of their La Liga title rivals Real Madrid is pla

REUTERS - Barcelona's objective is to try and match Manchester United's recent consistency in the Champions League, coach Pep Guardiola said on Tuesday.

Defending the European Cup has proved a difficult task for holders over the last few years, and the 2009 winners go into Wednesday's Champions League last-16 home second leg against VfB Stuttgart with their tie finely balanced at 1-1.

"It's a marvellous challenge to try and be one of the best eight sides in Europe and to emulate Manchester United, who last year became the only recent champions to make the quarter-finals the following season," Guardiola told a news conference.

Barca went on to beat Alex Ferguson's United side 2-0 in the final in Rome last May.

Guardiola also talked of the shock Champions League exit of La Liga title rivals Real Madrid at the hands of French outfit Olympique Lyon last week.

"Of course, it is possible the same could happen to us, this is a great competition," he said. "It's a warning. We could lose but it would have been impossible for us to achieve the titles we did last season if we had under-estimated our opponents."

Earlier, Barca midfielder Sergio Busquets said it was important for the Catalans to stick to the attacking style that had brought them the title last season.

"Above all we have to be ourselves," the Spain international told a separate news conference.

"That is to say, focus on everything that made us the reigning champions. Keeping the ball, playing as a unit and most importantly creating goalscoring chances."

Stuttgart coach Christian Gross said Russian side Rubin Kazan had shown the way forward for all visitors to the Nou Camp, after they surprised Barca 2-1 there in the group stages.

"Rubin scored a goal in the first minute and this always gives you a lot of confidence," Gross said.

"It surprised everyone that Rubin could beat Barca at the Nou Camp. This proves nothing is impossible and gives us hope that we can qualify to the next round."

Gross added that former Barca winger Aleksandr Hleb had trained normally and would be available on Wednesday.

Date created : 2010-03-17

  • CHAMPIONS LEAGUE

    Inter Milan knock out Chelsea to reach quarter finals

    Read more

  • CHAMPIONS LEAGUE

    Lyon eliminate giants Real, Man United demolish AC Milan

    Read more

  • CHAMPIONS LEAGUE

    Arsenal smash Porto, Bayern progress on away goals

    Read more

COMMENT(S)