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Football: Champions League: United face simple task.

DYNAMO KIEV v MANCHESTER UNITED

Champions League Group G, live on ONsport 1, 7.45pm

WALTER SMITH summed up the mood of a nation when he said Manchester United's domination of the Premiership was akin to the prominence he had enjoyed with Rangers in Scotland's top division.

United are playing the football of kings right now, which is remarkable when one considers that Dwight Yorke, persona non grata at Old Trafford after one too many parties, and Jaap Stam, their best stopper, have both been out of the starting line-up of late.

Discounting the Charity Shield, no club has lowered United's colours so far this season and Dynamo Kiev, a pale imitation of the team that put Ukrainian football back on the map two years ago, do not look capable of defeating the Reds.

Dynamo have regressed since selling Sergei Rebrov to Tottenham, Andrei Shevchenko to Milan and Oleg Luzhny to Arsenal.

There are still several talented players learning their trade under Ukraine and Dynamo coach Valery Lobanovsky, particularly their Belarus international midfielders, Alexander Khatskevich and Valentin Bialkevich, but their passes no longer find their way to Rebrov and Shevchenko.

The legendary duo have been replaced by Georgi Demetradze and Maxim Shatskikh. Without wishing to be unkind, Lobanovsky would give his right hand to have his old favourites back from England and Italy.

Dynamo are strongest in midfield. Unfortunately, the Reds are more impressive, with Ryan Giggs and David Beckham expected to have fun against Yuri Dmitrulin and Andriy Nesmachny.

Dmitrulin started life as a left-back and plays on the right because Dynamo did not replace Luzhny when he joined the Gunners.

POSSIBLE TEAMS

Dynamo Kiev: O Shovkovsky; Y Dmitrulin, V Vaschuk, O Holovko, A Nesmachny; A Husin, V Bialkevich, A Khatskevich, K Kaladze; M Shatskikh, G Demetradze.

Manchester United: R van der Gouw; G Neville, R Johnsen, J Stam, D Irwin; D Beckham, P Scholes, R Keane, R Giggs; A Cole, T Sheringham.
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Title Annotation:Sports
Author:Worwood, Mark
Publication:The Racing Post (London, England)
Date:Sep 19, 2000
Words:324
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