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By ESPN Staff
Dec 6, 2006

Inter's Mancini wants to avoid Lyon and Chelsea

ROME, Dec 6 (Reuters) - Inter Milan coach Roberto Mancini says Chelsea and Olympique Lyon are the teams to avoid in the last 16 of the Champions League.

Inter finished second in Group B after they drew 1-1 with Bayern Munich on Tuesday, Patrick Vieira scoring in stoppage time to cancel out Roy Makaay's 62nd-minute goal for the home side.

'It would certainly be better to avoid Lyon and especially Chelsea when the draw is made,' Mancini was quoted as saying in La Gazzetta dello Sport on Wednesday.

'Both are excellent sides. We would also have the disadvantage of playing the return leg away from home.

'Having said that, I'd like to think that we will make life difficult for whoever we play. I don't think anyone will relish the prospect of playing us.'

The draw for the last 16 will take place on December 15.

After an uneven start to the season, Inter have hit form. They arrived in Munich on the back of 11 consecutive victories in league and cup and are four points clear at the top of Serie A.

The draw against German champions Bayern was achieved without several first-team regulars, including goalkeeper Julio Cesar and midfielder Esteban Cambiasso, who were left on the bench.

Midfielder Dejan Stankovic was left out of the squad altogether to give him a chance to overcome a muscle strain.

'This time it was right to field those players who play less often,' Mancini said.

'We have a squad that should allow us to do well in all the competitions this season. Now I know I can count on everybody.'