After a successful UEFA Champions League Matchday LIVE debut, we are raring to go for matchday two. The programme will feature interviews with Manchester City FC's new midfielder Javi García, Valencia CF's prolific striker Roberto Soldado and Juventus maestro Andrea Pirlo. All that, and live coverage and updates from each of the eight games on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Preparing for the show is a long process. Thirty-two teams make up the group stage and it is important for us to keep up to speed with recent events at every one. As the show's presenter, I am lucky enough to have experts on the European game such as Andy Brassell alongside me, which is a great help. We inevitably like to keep the conversation highbrow, most markedly when the topic got onto the greatest manager moustaches in UEFA Champions League history, inspired by FC Zenit St Petersburg coach Luciano Spalletti's latest effort.
The first matchday of the competition certainly did not disappoint. We were at Real Madrid CF against Manchester City on Tuesday and Chelsea FC versus Juventus 24 hours later. From our commentary position I also had monitors in front of me to try and keep abreast of every fixture, updating listeners as to where and when goals were flying in. Arsenal FC's early comeback in Montpellier and FC Barcelona's narrow success over FC Spartak Moskva got me particularly animated amid the drama in Madrid and London.
There is perhaps one game I will be keeping my eye on more than any other on matchday two: CFR 1907 Cluj v Manchester United FC. For me, the Romanians produced the result of the round when they won 2-0 at SC Braga. A couple of former Arsenalistas – Mário Felgueiras and two-goal Rafael Bastos – starred. It reminded me of the club's sensational debut in the competition four years ago, when they won at AS Roma thanks to a Juan Culio double. I suspect Bastos could now be a marked man.
Our other main game on Tuesday's show is Barcelona's trip to SL Benfica. On Wednesday, commentary comes from north London, where Arsenal host Olympiacos FC for the second season running. We are also at FC Porto for their game against Paris Saint-Germain FC.
Follow @championsleague on Twitter and get your thoughts into us live on the show using #matchdaylive. Alternatively, you can email us at email@example.com. Join us from 19.30CET on UEFA.com on Tuesday and Wednesday for the next edition of UEFA Champions League Matchday LIVE.
The opinions expressed here are the writer's own and not those of UEFA.
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