Date: 3rd April 2008 at 4:11pm
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Never in the history of the Champions League happened that a team managed to progress after a 2-0 home defeat. That stat in itself is daunting enough for Roma I think.

Add to it the fact that Manchester United have won their last 10 home games in the Champions League, equalling Juventus’s record and you will have an idea about how improbable it is that Roma will turn the quarter-final on its head after a 2-0 reverse at home.

Of course, United have lost games at Old Trafford in Europe. It does not happen very often but it happens and it gives a glimmer of hope to Roma. But let’s have a look at these defeats.

1996/97: Manchester United-Fenerbahce 0-1
1996/97: Manchester United-Juventus 0-1
1996/97: Manchester United-Borussia Dortmund 0-1
1999/00: Manchester United-Real Madrid 2-3
2000/01: Manchester United-Bayern Munich 0-1
2001/02: Manchester United-Deportivo La Coruna 2-3
2004/05: Manchester United-AC Milan 0-1

None of these results would send Roma through to the semi-finals. And most of these defeats were down to rash all-out attacking thus leaving ourselves extremely vulnerable on the break which these opponents punished savagely, especially Real Madrid in 2000.

But this time, we are as good as through and it is Roma who will have to leave themselves open to United’s counter-attacks.