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Soccer Break: Wednesday

April 13, 2011

SOCCER-CHAMPIONS/

So this week’s Champions League quarter-final action is over and the semi-finals are set up. As expected Real Madrid strolled through their second-leg against Spurs and will now face Barcelona. The Spanish giants are set to clash four times in 18 days, including Saturday’s La Liga match at the Bernabeu and the King’s Cup final on April 20 in Valencia.

After their astonishing win at the San Siro, Schalke 04 finished off the job against Inter to set up a meeting with Manchester United.

So, who do you expect to see in the final at Wembley on May 28? Does the fact that the Spanish teams are playing each other in an NBA style series increase the chances of an upset? United fans will be feeling they have the easier half of the draw but Schalke showed in their impressive victories over the defending champion that they are not going to be anything like a pushover for the Manchester team. Could they pull off another surprise? What are the chances of Raul v Real?

In the rest of football, FIFA released their latest world rankings today. The calculations are complicated but are supposed to reflect the current balance of power in the international game. But do they? Are England really the sixth best team in the world? Are the United States really better than Mexico? Or, for that matter, are Australia really better than the USA? And would you put money on Jamaica beating Scotland? Lots to argue about there and feel free to leave your thoughts below or pop over to our Reuters Soccer facebook page and ‘Like’ it and discuss.

PICTURE: Raul of Schalke 04 celebrates a goal against Inter Milan during the second leg of their Champions League quarter-final soccer match in Gelsenkirchen April 13, 2011. REUTERS/ Ina Fassbende

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