| Thursday, December 12, 2002 18:48 EST
Inzaghi scores ninth tourney goal to lead Milan
LONDON -- Victories for Manchester United,
AC Milan and Barcelona put them on course for the Champions
League quarterfinals on Wednesday, but trouble is brewing for
holders Real Madrid after the club drew 2-2 with Lokomotiv Moscow.
Ruud van Nistelrooy scored both goals as United beat
Deportivo Coruna 2-0 at Old Trafford to stay top of Group D on
six points -- two more than Juventus, who hammered Basel 4-0.
AC Milan has six points in Group C after Filippo Inzaghi
secured a 1-0 win at Borussia Dortmund, and Barcelona has six
in Group A after equalling Milan's Champions League record of 10
consecutive wins with a 3-1 home victory over Newcastle United.
But Real Madrid, who went into this competition bidding for
a 10th title, needed Raul to equalize with his second goal of
the night to salvage a draw at the Bernabeu.
Though the club has lifted the game's most prestigious club
trophy three times in the last five years, Real has now gone
six Champions League games without a win and is rooted to the
bottom of Group C with just one point -- the same as Lokomotiv.
The team's chances now depend on the outcome of its home and
away clashes with Dortmund, who has three points, when the
competition restarts in two months' time.
Real coach Vicente del Bosque said: "There are still plenty
of points to play for ... I hope that our experience in Europe
will allow us to turn things round when the competition gets
underway again next February."
United manager Alex Ferguson, whose club will host the final
next May, was beaming after his side's seventh victory in eight
Champions League games this season.
"Our attacking play was very good," he told reporters. "It
was a good performance, I'm very pleased."
As for Van Nistelrooy, who also had two goals disallowed on
Wednesday, Ferguson said: "He's played fantastic and been a real
threat to them all night."
Juventus is the other side likely to reach the last eight
with United after goals from David Trezeguet, Paolo Montero,
Alessio Tacchinardi and, from the penalty spot, Alessandro Del
Piero swept aside a spirited Swiss side.
Juve's Serie A rivals Milan also looks good for a place in
the quarterfinals after Inzaghi arrowed in his ninth goal of
the campaign to secure its victory in Germany.
Having opened the second phase by beating Real, Milan should
finish the job during its double-header with Lokomotiv.
In the postponed match from Group A, Bobby Robson's return
to Barcelona ended in defeat for a Newcastle side missing their
main strikers Alan Shearer and Craig Bellamy through suspension.
Dani put the Catalans ahead after seven minutes, Shola
Ameobi levelled for Newcastle, but Patrick Kluivert restored
their lead before the break and Thiago Motta finished the job.
Victory left Barca level on six points with Inter Milan
while Newcastle, who qualified after losing their first three
games in the first phase, suffered a probably fatal second
Robson, who was coach of Barcelona from 1996-97 and lifted
the Spanish Cup and European Cup Winners' Cup with the Catalan
club, said: "We weren't outplayed."