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United braced for Beckham reunion

David Beckham could line up against his old club when AC Milan welcome Manchester United FC to San Siro seeking to maintain their 100% winning record at home against the English champions.

United braced for Beckham reunion
United braced for Beckham reunion ©UEFA.com

Manchester United FC face a reunion with one of their most famous recent sons when they visit AC Milan for the first leg of their last-16 contest.

• Back at San Siro for a second loan spell from LA Galaxy, England midfielder David Beckham could well line up for the first time against the club with whom he made his name – and won the UEFA Champions League in 1999.

• Milan have beaten United on the Premier League titleholders' four previous visits yet Leonardo's side failed to win any of their group-stage games at home this season. United, by contrast, have been impressive on their travels and have not lost an away tie in the UEFA Champions League since going down to Milan in the 2006/07 semi-finals.

Previous meetings
• Milan have emerged victorious on each previous occasion the clubs have met over two legs in Europe.

• They first faced each other in the European Champion Clubs' Cup semi-finals in 1957/58, when Milan became the first team to overturn a first-leg deficit against United in the competition. Beaten 2-1 at Old Trafford, the Italian side ran out 4-0 winners in the return, Juan Schiaffino (2), Nils Liedholm and Giancarlo Danova scoring the goals.

• When the sides met in the 1968/69 semi-finals, Milan prevailed 2-1 on aggregate. The Rossoneri followed up a 2-0 home win with a 1-0 loss in Manchester, where current United director Sir Bobby Charlton found the net.

• Milan recorded 1-0 victories home and away in the teams' UEFA Champions League first knockout round encounter in 2004/05, Hernán Crespo scoring in both games.

• The teams for the second leg of that tie in Milan on 8 March 2005 were:
: Dida, Cafu, Nesta, Stam, Maldini, Gattuso (Costacurta 88), Pirlo, Seedorf, Rui Costa (Dhorasoo 85), Kaká, Crespo (Ambrosini 78).
: Howard, Brown (Smith 85), Ferdinand, Silvestre, Heinze, Ronaldo, Keane, Scholes, Rooney, Giggs (Fortune 57), Van Nistelrooy.

• United earned a 3-2 first-leg lead at Old Trafford when the clubs met in the 2006/07 semi-final, Wayne Rooney's double undoing a 2-1 half-time deficit. But Milan powered through to the final by winning the return 3-0 through goals from Kaká, Clarence Seedorf and Alberto Gilardino.

• The lineups for that tie on 2 May 2007 were:
: Dida, Oddo, Nesta, Kaladze, Jankulovski, Gattuso (Cafu 84), Pirlo, Seedorf, Ambrosini, Kaká (Favalli 86), Inzaghi (Gilardino 66).
: Van der Sar, O'Shea (Saha 77), Brown, Vidić, Heinze, Ronaldo, Fletcher, Scholes, Carrick, Giggs, Rooney.

Match background
• United are seeking a fourth successive quarter-final berth and travel to Milan on the back of three straight away wins in this season's competition and five in total.

• Discounting the 2008 and 2009 UEFA Champions League finals, United's unbeaten run on their travels now stands at 15 matches, including nine victories and six draws.

• While Sir Alex Ferguson's side finished top of Group B, Milan had to settle for second place in Group C having picked up only two points from a possible nine at home.

• Milan suffered their one previous home loss to English opposition on the last occasion they welcomed visitors from the Premier League, Arsenal FC inflicting a 2-0 defeat at this stage of the 2007/08 UEFA Champions League.

• Since their 3-0 loss at Milan in 2007, United have avoided defeat on three subsequent trips to Italy including a goalless draw at San Siro en route to victory against FC Internazionale Milano in last term's first knockout round.

Team ties
• As a player with Brazil, Leonardo lined up against United defender Gary Neville in a 1995 friendly at Wembley, coming on as a substitute in a match the South Americans won 3-1. He later faced both Neville and Paul Scholes in a 1997 friendly in Paris that Brazil won 1-0.

• Beckham had a 12-year association with United, signing on in 1991 and making his league debut in 1995. He went on to make 394 appearances in all competitions, scoring 86 goals, before leaving for Real Madrid CF in 2003.

• During his time at Old Trafford, Beckham collected six Premier League winners' medals and, together with Ryan Giggs and Neville, was part of the team that won the UEFA Champions League final in 1999.

• Team-mates with England, Beckham and Michael Owen also played together at Real Madrid in 2004/05.

• Filippo Inzaghi played with Edwin van der Sar at Juventus between 1999 and 2001.

• Inzaghi scored an 84th-minute winner for Juventus when they beat United 1-0 in Turin in the group stage in December 1997. He also found the net twice at home to United in a 3-2 loss for the Bianconeri in the 1998/99 semi-finals.

• Thiago Silva was in Brazil's lineup for a 1-0 friendly win against an England side including Wes Brown, Ben Foster and Rooney in Qatar last November.

• Ronaldinho scored Brazil's winner against England in the 2002 FIFA World Cup quarter-finals, with Rio Ferdinand, Scholes and Owen all on the losing side along with Beckham.

• Ronaldinho and Anderson both started their careers with Brazilian club Grêmio Foot-ball Porto Alegrense.

• Mathieu Flamini played in the Premier League for Arsenal from 2004 to 2008, finishing on the winning side against United only twice in eight meetings.

• Gianluca Zambrotta was in the FC Barcelona side beaten by United in the 2007/08 UEFA Champions League semi-finals, his misplaced pass leading to Scholes scoring the only goal of the tie at Old Trafford.

• Flavio Roma was a colleague of Patrice Evra in the AS Monaco FC team that lost the UEFA Champions League final to FC Porto in 2004.

• Evra played in Italy for lower-division clubs Marsala Calcio and Monza Calcio.

• Ji-Sung Park scored for PSV Eindhoven against Milan in the 2005 UEFA Champions League semi-finals.