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Experience will help Juve


Arsenal must beat minnows in UCL

 By David Mooney

Man City's UCL adventure comes too soon for Iheanacho and Roberts

ESPN FC's Stevie Nicol thinks Manchester City's stellar start is more than just a fluke; he says manager Manuel Pellegrini's transfers this summer have all made sense.
Kelechi Iheanacho has missed out on the City squad.

Manchester City may now be relatively free of the constraints placed upon them by their punishment under the financial fair play regulations, but -- as the club announced its Champions League squad for the group stage of this season's competition -- there actually seems to be little change in how they're setting up. Perhaps this shows how ineffectual the reduction in squad size was for the last campaign, or perhaps it's more a demonstration of astuteness on the club's part to cope.

Either way, Manuel...

 By Simon Curtis

Is Kevin De Bruyne the final piece of the puzzle for Manchester City?

The 24-year-old Belgian midfielder joins Manchester City from the German side of Wolfsburg for a reported £54m.

Spending £54 million on Wolfsburg's Kevin De Bruyne is small change for Manchester City's owners, and although he arrives with an abundance of talent and a raft of recommendations from across the Bundesliga, his move to the Etihad raises a few pertinent questions.

First, what will happen to Samir Nasri and Jesus Navas? The Frenchman in particular is likely to see his place in jeopardy after the arrival of De Bruyne, whose move to Manchester was the culmination of months of transfer talk, claim...

Wayne Rooney and Sergio Romero struggle as Man United lose

ESPN FC's Craig Burley dissects Manchester United's 2-1 loss to Swansea City, and notes United's glaring need for transfer reinforcements.
Manchester United midfielder Juan Mata shared his feelings after his squad lost 2-1 against Swansea City.
English Premier League: Juan Mata scores a ripper from inside the penalty area to give Manchester United the lead (48'). Manchester United 1-0 Swansea
English Premier League: Swansea's Andre Ayew scores, Manchester United 1-1 Swansea
English Premier League: Swansea's Bafetimbi Gomis scores, Manchester United 1-2 Swansea
Swansea City Manager Garry Monk was very pleased with his team's performance in a 2-1 home win against Manchester United.

Manchester United went to Swansea on the back of a brilliant win against Club Brugge which secured a place in the group stages of the Champions League.

The good feeling did not last long as, despite going 1-0 ahead, United couldn't hold on to the three points -- or any points -- and conceded two in five minutes. The game was in their hands and they threw it away, which led to many questions.

Given how poor Wayne Rooney was again, does Louis van Gaal genuinely believe he doesn't need another striker?...

Michel Platini curiously quiet in bid to replace Blatter as FIFA president

UEFA President Michel Platini refused to speak about his candidacy to be the next FIFA President at a press conference in Monte Carlo, Monaco, but said he had "his UEFA hat on."
Former South Korean FA president Chung Mong-joon has vowed to fix "corrupt" FIFA after formally announcing his bid to replace Sepp Blatter at the helm of world football's governing body.
The former French international captain is favoured by many to take over as FIFA president after Blatter steps down. His former French international teammate, Luis Fernandez, speaks his praises and supports his decision to run for the position.
Michel Platini refused to get drawn into questions about his bid to become the next FIFA president.

MONACO -- The media crowded into Monaco's Grimaldi Forum hoping to hear the front-runner -- among confirmed candidates, at least -- in the race to succeed Sepp Blatter as FIFA president in February speak for the very first time and got -- nothing.

Big fat zero, or just about.

UEFA President Michel Platini held his traditional seasonal kickoff news conference on the banks of the Mediterranean a day after the Champions League group draw but made it very clear he wasn't going to answer any questions...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Which Champions League giant will miss out on the knockout rounds?

The FC TV panel have had their say, but what do you think? Vote now!

Now that the draw has been made for the UEFA Champions League group stage, we want to know which of the big clubs will fail to make the Round of 16?

Which UCL giants will miss the knockout round?

Could last season's beaten finalists Juventus struggle after a summer of transition, having been placed in a group with Manchester City, Sevilla and Borussia Monchengladbach?

Current holders Barcelona should have few issues getting through their group but what about the battle for second -- are Bayer Leverkusen or Roma likelier to miss out?


 By Rob Train

Real Madrid get gentle Champions League group to aid Rafa Benitez

ESPN FC's Alejandro Moreno and Alexis Nunes look ahead to the Champions League campaigns for Barcelona, Real Madrid, Juventus and Bayern Munich.

Rafa Benitez's task in the Champions League this season is fairly straightforward: win it. Carlo Ancelotti did but reaching the semifinals the following season wasn't enough to save his job. Jose Mourinho guided Real to the semis in three consecutive seasons after arriving at the Bernabeu in 2010, following a barren period for the club of six consecutive defeats in the round of 16.

Benitez's margin for error in his first season really doesn't fall anywhere in between. The semifinals may buy him...