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Soccer Break Wednesday – Champions League week special

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SOCCER-CHAMPIONS/REALGot your breath back yet? Perfected the Dejan Stankovic volley in your mirror ready to take out on the pitch? Well Tuesday’s first installment of four Champions League quarter-final evenings was spectacular and there is more to come on Wednesday.

First, a recap of last night. The Real Madrid backlash did kick in, though against the 10 men of Tottenham Hotspur and two extremely well-taken goals that on another night may have gone wide of the post.

Would 11 v 11 have made a difference? Is there any way back for Tottenham? And do you think some players may leave the club in search of Champions League next season if Spurs don’t qualify this time around?

And how about holders Inter Milan? Hopelessly outplayed in their last two games and with a creaking defence, can they score four unanswered goals in Germany to make the semi-finals? The Inter chairman has pledged his support for coach Leonardo but surely his days are numbered on this form.

Settled Anelka making the difference for Chelsea

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Nicolas Anelka’s arrival at Chelsea in January last year hardly had the fans buzzing amid all the big-money signings since Russian billionaire owner Roman Abramovich transformed the fortunes of the west London club.

The peripatetic France striker seemed like a stop-gap and few expected him to be part of Chelsea’s long-term future.

Wenger’s unrivalled Midas touch

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Liverpool’s Rafa Benitez may feel he got a good price for Xabi Alonso but he is in no danger of dislodging Arsene Wenger as the Premier League manager with the Midas touch.

Wenger has received criticism of late for not ‘spending big’ on replacements for departing first-teamers. He should be receiving credit for earning a huge pile of cash for players no longer in his plans. Does anyone in football generate as much money from transfers as Wenger?

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