United once more unto the brink

Brinkmanship is Manchester United’s stock in trade. So About Prada Products often have they tempted fate it is a wonder fate has not got fed up and taken its ball home.

This evening will find United in a situation which is all too familiar to them. Having suffered a bad result at home in a major European tie, they now have to redeem themselves in distinctly less favourable circumstances.

It is almost as if Sir Alex Ferguson’s team need to flirt with failure to find the passions which have driven them to one triumph after another over the last 10 years. Few can doubt that they are well capable of overcoming Bayer Leverkusen to reach the Champions League final at Hampden Park a fortnight tomorrow.

In a sense this is Turin revisited. Three years ago Manchester United could only draw 1-1 at home to Juventus in the opening leg of the semi-finals and in the return game conceded two early goals. Yet they rallied to win 3-2 and in the final came from behind to beat Bayern Munich.

Once more any confidence in a United success is not based on the statistics, which favour Klaus Toppm?ller’s side more than they did Juventus. Last Wednesday Bayer twice came from behind to force a 2-2 draw at About Prada Products Old Trafford, which means that they need only draw 0-0 or 1-1 to go through on away goals.

Manchester United, moreover, are now without David Beckham and Gary Neville. This will Authentic Prada Handbags Outlet Online mean Ferguson having to field an entirely makeshift right wing Authentic Prada Shoes Outlet against the pace and Agatha Ruiz Dela Prada Book Bags guile of All Prada Nylon Bags the Brazilian Ze Roberto, with Denis Irwin at right-back unless Ronny Johnsen is considered fit enough to resume at centre-back, which would release Wes Brown to go wide.

Yet far from appearing downcast, the United manager is beamingly optimistic, ever confident that the greater odds his players face the better the performance will be. The fact that in the quarter-finals Liverpool took a 1-0 lead to the BayArena and lost 4-2 does not bother him. „We’ve seen so many videos of Leverkusen that we know practically everything about their strengths and their weaknesses,“ he said yesterday. „I doubt if Klaus Toppm?ller will say ‚right lads, 0-0‘ because they haven’t done that this season.“

That may be Black Prada Bag With Gold Hardware so but at the same time Manchester United will be hoping that the successive defeats against Werder Bremen and Nuremberg that have cast sudden doubts on Bayer’s ability to win the German league, affect the confidence of Toppm?ller’s players.

If nerves are going to play a part, United will surely have the edge. „Our players have done it before,“ said Ferguson. Agatha Ruiz Dela Prada Sale Uk „They have proven ability and proven character.“

The return of Roy Keane after the hamstring injury he suffered in La Coruna in the quarter-finals will give United a stronger chance of withstanding the kind of relentless midfield pressure from Michael Ballack and Bernd Schneider Authentic Prada Handbags Wholesale which so spectacularly undid Liverpool’s defence. Ferguson will probably look to Keane and Nicky Butt to provide the stability in central midfield while Juan Sebastian Veron and Paul Scholes seek to infiltrate Bayer’s cover and support the front pair, Ruud Van Nistelrooy and Ryan Giggs. Certainly United need Giggs and Veron to be more effective than they were at Old Trafford.

As many as 13 players could be walking on thin disciplinary ice. Laurent Blanc, Butt prada online, Van Nistelrooy and Keane will stand to miss the final if they are cautioned a third time, Agatha Ruiz Dela Prada E Shop while Bayer have nine on two yellow cards. Ferguson hoped that the referee „understands the nature of the game and uses common sense“. The official is Kim Milton Nielsen, the Dane who sent off Beckham when England met Argentina in the 1998 World Cup.

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