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20/05/2008 08:55

Papers: Pitch battle

Finalists face pitch concerns
Chelsea and Manchester United have been warned that the pitch at the Luzhniki Stadium is dangerous and not fit to stage the Champions League Final. It is the same ground where England played their Euro 2008 qualifier on an artificial pitch against Russia last year, but it has now been relaid with turf shipped in from Slovakia. The blocks of grass had been frozen for several days and they are now struggling to bed in to form an even surface. English head groundsman Matthew Frost said: “It's not like one of the better Premier League pitches, far from it. Unfortunately things didn't work out. The ball may not travel perfectly like on a pitch that has been in situ for some time. There might be a bit of a bobble.”
Staff reporter, Daily Mail

Carlos Tevez insists United have the mental edge over Chelsea going into Wednesday's Champions League decider. "We are a better side than Chelsea and that is a psychological problem for them," says the Argentine striker.

Former Spartak Moscow defender Nemanja Vidic, a regular at the Luzhniki Stadium, has called on fans of his former side to support United on wednesday. "The Luzhniki was like home for me," said the Serb. "I hope Spartak fans support my side - in return I promise them beautiful football."

Rio Ferdinand, set to captain United in Moscow, says he is delighted to have won over the fans who booed him for his drawn out contract saga of three years ago. “When I signed my previous contract at United, in 2005, my aim was to change opinions towards me and I think I have done that,” he said.

Round Up By Steve Bartram


Premier League