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Puyol expects battle with Rangers

Published: Wednesday 7 November 2007, 1.42CET
Playing again after injury, FC Barcelona's Carles Puyol is just happy to be involved in Wednesday's top-of-the-table clash with Barça's Group E rivals Rangers FC.
by Graham Hunter
from Barcelona

Tournament statistics

BarcelonaRangers

Goals scored18
 
7
Attempts on target87
 
21
Attempts off target62
 
20
Corners91
 
20
Offsides26
 
12
Fouls committed154
 
71
Yellow cards20
 
15
Red cards0
1

Matches

6 November 2007

A Liverpool
8-0
Beşiktaş
A Porto
2-1
Marseille
B Valencia
0-2
Rosenborg
B Schalke
0-0
Chelsea
C Lazio
2-1
Werder
D Celtic
1-0
Benfica
D Shakhtar
0-3
Milan
C Olympiacos
0-0
Real Madrid

7 November 2007

 
Published: Wednesday 7 November 2007, 1.42CET

Puyol expects battle with Rangers

Playing again after injury, FC Barcelona's Carles Puyol is just happy to be involved in Wednesday's top-of-the-table clash with Barça's Group E rivals Rangers FC.

FC Barcelona captain Carles Puyol says he does not mind whether coach Frank Rijkaard plays him at right-back or at centre-half. So long as the proud Catalan is in the team, he believes he can add extra value – particularly on testing nights like the one against Rangers FC on UEFA Champions League Matchday 4.

Tough test
After an early-season injury lay-off and a successful return to action, Puyol is keen to ensure that Barcelona establish bragging rights at the top of Group E as soon as possible. "Rangers are a good side and I know that they are difficult to beat – we found that out in Glasgow," explained the man known as 'Tarzan' to the Camp Nou fans, referring to Barcelona's 0-0 draw a fortnight ago.

'Fascinating'
"All I care about is that the coach picks me, and he knows that whether my job is at full-back or central defender then I'm simply at his disposal," said the 29-year-old. "These are the types of matches which you look forward to so much and this one could be fascinating. I think winning the group is important so that we have home advantage in the knockout rounds. But, for this game, it takes two teams to make a football match so let's see whether Rangers come out to play or simply want to close the match down and look to hit us on the break."

Ronaldinho key
Gianluca Zambrotta's troublesome ankle will determine whether or not Puyol plays at right-back against Rangers. Yet the Spanish international believes it will be another team-mate who holds the key to victory. "Ronaldinho's return to form and goalscoring touch is vital for us and could be the difference against Rangers," he predicted. "I can only say that Ronnie's attitude and hard work in training have been exemplary recently and I've been sad to see people blaming him every time we draw or lose a match. Everyone in the team knows how important he is and it is in this type of game where he usually proves it."

Last updated: 07/11/07 21.43CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefachampionsleague/season=2008/matches/round=15105/match=301208/prematch/focus/index.html#puyol+expects+battle+with+rangers

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