The Champions League draw has been made, and the holders Milan will be coming to town in February, the first meeting of the two sides in a competitive match.
There were meetings back in 1994, Milan winning over two legs in the Super Cup, but that was never a particularly valued competition, so this tie is an entirely new experience for both clubs, a quite remarkable statistic given their ever-present nature in the tournament.
I have to be honest and say I’m delighted with the draw. Porto were the obvious preference as the smallest of the the sides we could’ve played, but Milan are an aging side who like to play football and won’t harry our players. In other words, their style plays perfectly into our hands. Plus they’re struggling in Serie A this season, so all in all it isn’t a bad draw.
That said, it won’t be easy – they are the reigning champions after all and in Kaka they have a genius who can unlock any defence in an instant. And Maldini, in his final season, would love nothing better than another Champions League medal before he retires. But the draw could’ve been much worse – their city rivals Inter were the team I wanted to avoid, and Liverpool have a job on their hands to beat them.
We’re nearly at Christmas now, and any Gooner would’ve snapped your hand off if you offered the position we’re currently in, across all competitions. Long may it continue.