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Martin O'Neill On UEFA Cup CSKA Draw

Martin O'Neill On UEFA Cup CSKA Draw

Martin O'Neill has spoken about the UEFA Cup clash with CSKA Moscow telling the official site: 'I think the draw is very tough. They won all four games in their group and I think it will be exceptionally difficult. When it comes round, we will give it plenty of thought.'

He also has joined the growing calls from Premiership managers for a winter break like many of our European counterparts get.

'My own view is there should be a winter break. I think it would be a fantastic thing. I believe it would give everyone a lift in January. We had it for a couple of years in the Scottish Premier League and we all got great benefit from it.'

He said it would be great to play the Boxing and New Year Day clashes then have three weeks off, explaining:

'It gives the players a chance to get away with their families. They feel much better for it. It was so beneficial. One of the years when we had the break in Scotland, Celtic went on to reach the UEFA Cup final. I genuinely believe the winter break was of great benefit for us.'

What would we do for those three weeks though, it would be so boring!!!!!!!!!!

On Sky Sports News the Villa boss added about the CSKA game that he thought it would be 'exceptionally tough' adding, 'But it doesn't really matter - we are in the hat and that was obviously the very important issue. But when it comes round - and it is a long time away - we will give it plenty of thought.'

He was also asked about the chances of being forced to play on the dreaded plastic pitch in the Luzhniki Stadium (England fans will remember that place!) 'Well, I assume you have to accept it - I think Celtic played a Champions League qualifying game there and therefore it has been used for matches of that ilk. Obviously England played at the time and so if you are playing on it for an international game of great importance then I assume they could easily go back and play the same again in the Uefa Cup.'

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

Writer:J P Fear
Date:Friday December 19 2008
Time: 5:51PM


we should sign Leandro Love, that would F#ck them
19/12/2008 21:09:00
Yeah, it`s a tough draw cuz we messed up our last 2 games u loon !
20/12/2008 09:06:00
Very tough opposition, no doubt about that, but if we are able to send out a strong starting line up against them in both legs, then we surely have every opportunity of turning them over. Pity the second leg though is away from Villa Park, on their notorious plastic pitch in Moscow, but even that will be a very useful learning experience for us. I'm looking forward very much to the tie.
08/01/2009 16:06:00
Admittedly the CSKA players will be fresh off of their mid-season winter break, but it just might be that that doesn't actually work in their favour. However way we look at it though, or no matter how many times we second guess the outcome, its going to be a very testing couple of games, and we are going to have to be at our very best to beat them.
08/01/2009 16:09:00
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