Champions League news

Fergie excited by Real clash

December 20, 2012
By ESPN staff

Sir Alex Ferguson has responded positively to Thursday's news that Manchester United will face Real Madrid in the last-16 of the Champions League.

Sir Alex Ferguson and Cristiano Ronaldo will be reunited in the Champions League
GettyImagesSir Alex Ferguson and Cristiano Ronaldo will be reunited in the Champions League

• Blog: Madrid tie stirs the blood
• Blog: Real under pressure
• Delaney: Ronaldo headlines

The Spanish champions were paired with the Red Devils in the tie of the round, with the first leg to be played at the Bernabeu before a return encounter at Old Trafford.

As a sub-plot to a fascinating tie, Cristiano Ronaldo will face his former team for the first time since his £80 million record transfer to Madrid in the summer of 2009.

Ferguson will also come up against old rival Jose Mourinho, whom he enjoyed many a battle with during the Portuguese's time at Chelsea. Mourinho also got the better of United - famously - while at Porto in 2004.

"Well, it's the tie of the round," Ferguson told the club's official website. "It's a great opportunity for our fans to see Cristiano again and also for me to meet up with Jose again - I'll need to order some good wine!"

Rio Ferdinand had earlier responded to the draw, tweeting from his personal account: "Oh yes, Madrid! What a great couple of games that'll be! Cristiano [Ronaldo] see you soon bro!"

Elsewhere in the draw, Arsenal were paired with German giants Bayern Munich, while Celtic will take on Italian champions Juventus. The first legs will take place on February 12/13 and 19/20, while the second legs will occur on March 5/6 and 12/13.