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Juve look to book early

Published: Wednesday 5 November 2003, 17.32CET
Juventus FC are able to progress to the last 16 tonight, while Arsenal FC face a must-win match.
Published: Wednesday 5 November 2003, 17.32CET

Juve look to book early

Juventus FC are able to progress to the last 16 tonight, while Arsenal FC face a must-win match.

Italian champions Juventus FC can follow Real Madrid CF in booking their place in the last 16 of the UEFA Champions League tonight.

Maximum points
Marcello Lippi's side will secure progress as Group D winners if they record a fourth successive victory in the competition away at Real Sociedad de Fútbol.

Missing regulars
Juventus eliminated two other Spanish sides, FC Barcelona and Madrid, from Europe last season and beat Real 4-2 in Turin two weeks ago, but they travel to San Sebastian without a handful of regulars. In the same section, Greek champions Olympiacos CFP are looking for their first points against Galatasaray SK.

Wenger upbeat
Another team desperate for a victory are English Premiership leaders Arsenal FC, who sit bottom of Group B ahead of FC Dynamo Kyiv's visit to Highbury. Arsenal have failed to win any of their last eight Champions League matches and any of their last six at home, but manager Arsène Wenger sounded upbeat as he said: "Let's turn it round and the team will still have a bright future in the Champions League."

Zaccheroni bow
The other Group B game is Alberto Zaccheroni's first as Internazionale FC coach in Europe, as the Nerazzurri welcome FC Lokomotiv Moskva to Milan aiming to avenge their 3-0 defeat in Russia last time out.

Spotlight on Elber
The spotlight in Munich is certain to fall on Brazilian striker Giovane Elber as he returns to the club he left in the summer, FC Bayern München, with his new employers, Olympique Lyonnais. "I am really looking forward to going back to Munich," he said.

Home form key
Only two points separate Bayern, who lead Group A, from Celtic FC, who sit bottom, and the Scottish side will look to revive their hopes at home against RSC Anderlecht. Celtic's home form could be key: they are unbeaten in 61 matches at Celtic Park, stretching back to August 2001.

AEK chasing win
Finally to Group C where RC Deportivo La Coruña can open a four-point gap at the top if they win at AS Monaco FC. Winless AEK Athens FC, meanwhile, are chasing a first Champions League victory in 16 attempts away at PSV Eindhoven. The omens are not favourable: PSV triumphed in Athens a fortnight ago and have won all their previous home matches against Greek opposition.

Last updated: 05/11/03 22.55CET

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