CSKA Moscow v Rangers
Rangers manager Alex McLeish has revealed winger Chris Burke remains a doubt ahead of Tuesday night's Champions League qualifier at CSKA Moscow.
The 20-year-old fainted during the 0-0 draw at Aberdeen on Saturday, with the heat appearing to have de-hydrated the youngster.
McLeish said: "Burke is a doubt but Dado Prso and Peter Lovenkrands should be OK."
Striker Prso fell awkwardly on an ankle at Pittodrie while Lovenkrands was the victim of a number of hefty tackles.
Burke remains a doubt as the first-leg clash, which has been switched to neighbours Lokomotiv's ground, is likely to be played in a similar temperature.
Moscow is enjoying a hot summer and the players strolled around Red Square on Monday morning having a look at the Kremlin.
McLeish said: "The temperature is not something we are used to in the Scottish league but we trained in similar conditions in Austria, where it was very warm and the lads worked hard under intense heat."
Graz AK v Liverpool
MURPHY LEFT BEHIND
Danny Murphy was left out of Liverpool's squad to travel to Austria for their Champions League qualifier against Graz AK.
Murphy has been told he can leave Anfield with the club having accepted a bid in the region of £3million from Tottenham.
The midfielder stayed behind as his colleagues flew out for the third qualifying round first-leg tie.
Rafael Benitez has admitted the major changes he is undertaking put side at a disadvantage.
The new Liverpool chief took his side into the first competitive match since he joined in the summer from Valencia with transfer speculation surrounded several players.
More than 10 players have left either on extended loans, frees or cash transfers in the case of Emile Heskey, but it is clear there will be more to follow.
Dietmar Hamann, Steve Finnan, El-Hadji Diouf and Milan Baros could all go, but Benitez must pull his squad together to get through a vital European match that will dictate his spending.
He said: "I have seen two videos and talked with the scouts. They have 10 internationals and they won the double. For me they are a danger team. They win a lot of games.
"Playing Liverpool is a great motivation for them so if we do not concentrate we will be in trouble.
"It is another problem for us that we have to play the game so early - before our league season - while they have already played four league matches.
"That is another reason for them to be dangerous, they have an advantage because we are not at the right pace for competition level.
"They have an advantage too because they have the same coach, the same players and we are changing things.
"My team though is working hard and they are happy. But we do not have time. It will improve but we must get this result right and concentrate hard on getting to the next stage."
Benitez expects skipper Steven Gerrard to be fit after suffering a thigh injury on the tour of the United States last week.
Team (from): Dudek, Kirkland, Finnan, Josemi, Henchoz, Hyypia, Carragher, Riise, Kewell, Gerrard, Biscan, Diao, Hamann, Owen, Baros, Cisse, Sinama-Pongolle, Harrison, Warnock, Whitbread, Traore.
Brighton v Plymouth
Plymouth are still without suspended midfield duo David Friio and Lee Makel for their Championship match at Brighton.
Their absence on Saturday meant Lee Hodges and Steve Adams occupied central midfield roles in the goalless home draw with Millwall.
Experienced defender David Worrell started at right-back against the Lions and looks set to retain his place with Paul Connolly still recovering from a virus.
Midfielder David Norris (thigh) could come back into contention after missing out against Millwall but central defender Hasney Aljofree (knee) is ruled out.
Charlie Oatway is an injury worry for Brighton after limping out of Saturday's defeat at Reading with a hamstring strain.
Goalkeeper Ben Roberts is unlikely to return after missing the match with a back problem, and star striker Leon Knight is out as he serves the second of a three-game suspension.
Seagulls manager Mark McGhee must cope with a depleted squad and has five other players unavailable through injury.
Richard Carpenter (knee), Paul Watson (back), Chris McPhee (foot), Dean Blackwell and Simon Rodger (both cruciate ligament damage) are all out.
Sunderland v Crewe
Sunderland have three major injury doubts over key players.
Goalkeeper Mart Poom needs a fitness test on a back injury, captain Gary Breen injured a hamstring in training and Kevin Kyle is also a doubt.
Crewe could be without Keith Briggs for the trip to Sunderland after he aggravated a hamstring against Cardiff.
If he is not passed fit, Anthony Tonkin will be included in a rejigged defence. David Vaughan and Billy Jones have dead legs but should be fit to play.
Rotherham v Burnley
Rotherham boss Ronnie Moore has no injury worries for their first home game of the season, against Burnley.
Robbie Stockdale suffered a minor knock on the ankle at QPR on Saturday but he has trained and is expected to be fit.
Burnley manager Steve Cotterill has a doubt over one unnamed player, who is rated at no more than 50-50.
Robbie Blake and Ian Moore should feature after suffering no ill effects to their minor niggles in Saturday's 1-1 draw against Sheffield United.
Cardiff City v Coventry
Cardiff will name the same side that drew at Crewe for their first home game of the season against Coventry.
Midfielder Willie Boland and striker Peter Thorne will be missing again with hip and neck injuries.
Tim Sherwood could be in line for his first start for Coventry after coming on a substitute at the weekend.
Midfielder Eric Deloumeux continues to be ruled out by a hamstring strain but Craig Pead has returned to training after recovering from a calf niggle.
Gillingham v Leeds United
Gillingham should have forward Matt Bodkin signed in time for the game but he is unlikely to start.
New signings Iwan Roberts and Darren Byfield likely to start. Barry Ashby (ankle), Ian Cox (back) and Nicky Southall (ankle) return after injury.
New Leeds signing Stephen Crainey is expected to be on the bench again after his move from Southampton was sealed.
Julian Joachim and Michael Ricketts are expected to start up front with Brian Deane on the bench.
Millwall v Wigan
Paul Ifill looks set to miss Millwall's game with Wigan after injuring his calf at Plymouth, so substitute Josh Simpson could replace him from the start.
Player-manager Dennis Wise is fit after a calf problem but Kevin Muscat is out.
Nathan Ellington is fit to lead Wigan's attack at Millwall despite limping out of Saturday's draw at Nottingham Forest with cramp.
Wigan have no suspension problems and are expected to pick the same starting line-up as on Saturday
West Ham v Reading
Rufus Brevett looks likely to miss out for West Ham after his sending-off at Leicester on Saturday.
His place will go to Chris Cohen, and apart from that West Ham have no selection worries for the visit of manager Alan Pardew's former side.
Reading have a full squad to choose from for the trip to East London.
Graeme Murty came off as a precaution on Saturday but seems to be fit after a chest infection, and Bobby Convey is likely to be on the bench again
Sheff Utd v Stoke City
Sheffield United's teenage striker Billy Sharp is ruled out by a dose of shingles but manager Neil Warnock has plenty of other options up front.
Barry Hayles partnered Andy Gray at Burnley and Jonathan Forte and Ashley Ward were on the bench.
Stoke boss Tony Pulis looks set to keep faith with his winning team for Tuesday's trip to Sheffield United.
Steve Simonsen must wait for his debut, with Ed de Goey likely to start in goal and John Eustace still absent.
Barnsley v Bristol City
Barnsley midfielder Antony Kay sits out the second of a two-match suspension for the visit of Bristol City.
Jacob Burns is doubtful after picking up a foot injury against Milton Keynes on Saturday while loan striker Daniel Nardillo hopes to make the squad.
Bristol City midfielder Tommy Docherty returns to skipper the side after shaking off a thigh injury.
City boss Brian Tinnion is also hopeful Tony Butler will recover from a back injury though he has missed training.
Blackpool v Sheff Wed
New Blackpool signings Keigan Parker and Mark McGregor are pushing for places in the starting line-up as boss Colin Hendry could ring the changes.
Midfielder Keith Southern (knee), Paul Edwards (ban) and keeper Lee Jones (groin) are all missing.
Sheffield Wednesday are still without midfielder Glenn Whelan as he serves the second of a three-match suspension.
Lee Peacock spearheads the attack for Chris Turner's side but midfielder Matthew Hamshaw (ankle) is missing
Bournemouth v Walsall
Bournemouth's only change will be the absence of Neil Young, who is suspended after a red card on Saturday.
Garreth O'Connor and Jason Tindall (knee) and Stephen Purches (ankle) are also still out.
Walsall be without central defender Ian Roper for the trip to the south coast after sent off at the weekend.
Simon Osborn is back from the ban that kept him out of Saturday's win over Port Vale though he is still feeling the effects of a knee injury.
Bradford v Peterborough
Bradford boss Colin Todd will give defender Lewis Emanuel a late fitness test on an Achilles injury ahead of Peterborough's visit.
Defender Jason Gavin is out with a foot injury and Danny Forrest is sidelined as he struggles with a back problem.
Peterborough boss Barry Fry is set to stick with the same side that beat Tranmere last weekend.
Defender Steve Jenkins could also be added to the squad after recovering from a back problem
Brentford v Doncaster
Brentford boss Martin Allen is likely to stick with the same squad who lost to Chesterfield at the weekend.
Michael Turner, Deon Burton and John Salako all made their debuts while defender Sam Sodje is still suspended.
Doncaster boss Dave Penney is likely to stick with the same side who beat Blackpool at the weekend.
Rovers striker Jermaine McSporran is still at least three weeks away from a return after undergoing a cartilage operation last week.
Huddersfield v Chesterfield
Midfielder Chris Brandon is hoping to grab a place in Huddersfield's starting line-up against Chesterfield after impressing as a substitute on Saturday.
Captain Efe Sodje is set to start despite being substituted but keeper Ian Gray is out with a hand injury.
Chesterfield boss Roy McFarland will be without veteran striker Wayne Allison after he pulled a muscle.
Defender Kevin Dawson also misses the game with a thigh problem but striker Adam Smith is set to make the squad.
Colchester v Stockport
Colchester boss Phil Parkinson will name midfielders Kem Izzet and Ben Bowditch in the squad after ankle injuries kept them out on Saturday.
But club captain Karl Duguid is unlikely to feature before the middle of September as he continues to recover from a knee operation.
Stockport boss Sammy McIlroy has no new injury concerns so is expected to field the same side against Colchester.
Jon Daly is short of match fitness while Danny Griffin (Achilles) is out.
Tranmere v Hartlepool
Tranmere defender Ian Sharps returns from suspension in time for the Hartlepool game but might have to settle for a place on the bench.
Midfielder Iain Hume could miss out with a thigh strain - if so David Beresford will step in.
Hartlepool boss Neale Cooper has no fresh injury worries but is still without defender Micky Barron who had a second hernia operation last week.
Fellow defender Andrew Jordan also remains sidelined with a calf injury.
Torquay v Hull
Torquay manager Leroy Rosenior is likely to stick with the same side who drew with Bristol City at the weekend.
United have no new injuries and there should be no changes as the home side face fellow promotion winners Hull.
Hull are also expected to field the same side that beat Bournemouth on the opening day of the season.
But defender Marc Joseph picked up a head injury and could miss out while fellow centre-half Alton Thelwell is also doubtful for the trip south.
Port Vale v MK Dons
Port Vale striker Lee Matthews is ready for his first competitive home start against Milton Keynes Dons.
Matthews comes in for Billy Paynter, who starts a ban after being sent off in the defeat at Walsall.
Dons boss Stuart Murdoch is keeping faith with new signing Izale McLeod after his grabbed an equaliser against Barnsley at the weekend.
Paul Rachubka also keeps his place ahead of the injured Scott Bevan while Alex Tapp (knee) is still sidelined
Oldham v Wrexham
Matty Appleby will return to the Oldham midfield for the first time since March 2003 after overcoming a career-threatening hip and thigh injury.
Clyde Wijnhard is set to start on the bench after returning to Boundary Park on a non-contract basis.
Wrexham boss Denis Smith is confident Jim Whitley will recover from a slight knock in time for the trip to Oldham.
Defender Craig Morgan is also a minor concern as he has a stomach bug otherwise Smith will have a full squad.
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INJURY CRISIS AT OLD TRAFFORD OLD TRAFFORD CRISIS DINAMO BUCHAREST v MAN UTD, CHAMPIONS LEAGUE, TOMORROW
By David Mcdonnell
SIR ALEX FERGUSON and his Manchester United squad fly to Romania today knowing their proud record of having qualified for the Champions League every season for the past eight years is under genuine threat.
Sunday's 3-1 Community Shield defeat to Arsenal will have caused United no more than bruised pride.
But of wider concern is the lengthy list of absentees that is threatening to wreck their season before it has started.
United go into tomorrow night's third qualifying round first leg against Dinamo Bucharest without NINE players - six of whom would expect to be in the first team.
Not being involved in Europe's elite competition and losing out on at least £15million is a nightmare scenario at Old Trafford.
The gravity of the situation is not lost on United winger Ryan Giggs who is well aware of the disastrous consequences if United fail to qualify for the main competition.
"It could be a tricky game if we're not prepared right and don't approach it in the right way," said Giggs. "If that happens we could come unstuck. We'll be looking to do well over there but it's definitely a bit of a banana skin if we don't approach it properly. It's going to be difficult for us.
"Every team gets injuries and obviously you'd prefer to go into a season with a clean slate. That's not to be but we've got a squad capable of going out and winning Wednesday's game."
Added to the list of injured, suspended and Olympics-bound United players missing are those struggling for match fitness with the start of the new campaign so close.
Mikael Silvestre, who endured a torrid time against Arsenal, has only had five days' pre-season training, while the rest of United's defence looked like they could do with another week of preparation.
The loss of Wes Brown until the start of September has intensified Fergie's defensive headache, with the United boss short of reliable replacements to fill the void.
Quinton Fortune played his first game for six months on Sunday and it showed in his hesitant display, while John O'Shea looked anxious and the normally dependable Gary Neville was out of sorts.
It means Fergie is likely to draft Phil Neville into his rearguard at either right or left-back, with brother Gary Neville and Silvestre in the centre and O'Shea in the other full-back role.
It's a far from ideal defensive line-up but Fergie has little other option.
The only other realistic choice is to play skipper Roy Keane in central defence where he played during United's recent American tour. Whatever defensive formation Fergie decides upon, it will be one he merely hopes can make it through tomorrow's first leg without returning to Old Trafford needing to claw back a significant deficit.
Fergie was forced to protect his key players ahead of tomorrow's clash by withdrawing them from the action early during the Community Shield on Sunday. "We were just glad to get through the game with no more injuries," said Fergie. "We've got the players who started the game plus the three experienced substitutes so we will pick from that.
"We had to take off Keane and Giggs, players that needed to come off in view of Wednesday. The key for us was making changes at the right time and just giving those players enough time." The need to protect players from adding to the injury list has the disadvantage of not giving them as much chance to gain match fitness, a situation Giggs admitted was far from ideal.
"Ideally you want three or four games under your belt in pre-season," said Giggs.
"I've played just under two full games so it's important for players to get their match fitness. The likes of Darren Fletcher and Quinton Fortune hadn't played at all in pre-season so it was important for them to get a run-out."
If United need a reminder of how perilous the final qualifying stage of the Champions League can be, they need only cast their minds back a year ago to Newcastle's bitter experience. Sir Bobby Robson's side went out at the qualifying stage on penalties to Partizan Belgrades, and Dinamo Bucharest are arguably a stronger team.
One thing is certain: United will need their most experienced players to be at their best tomorrow to ensure one of the two glittering prizes they covet does not elude them before the season proper has begun.
First tests for former champions
Tuesday, 10 August 2004
A trio of former European champions are playing for their places in the UEFA Champions League group stage when the third qualifying round begins tonight. Juventus FC, Liverpool FC and SL Benfica are all in action as six of the 16 ties get under way, marking the first competitive match for these clubs' respective new managers, Fabio Capello, Rafael Benítez and Giovanni Trapattoni.
In the case of Capello, who led AC Milan to Champions League success in 1994, his Juventus side face Sweden's Djugårdens IF without midfield players Pavel Nedved and Mauro Camoranesi and suspended defender Jonathan Zebina. Paolo Montero and Igor Tudor are also doubtful for the visit of Djugården, who overcame Lithuania's FBK Kaunas in the previous round.
The last European assignment for Liverpool's new coach Benítez was May's UEFA Cup final, when his Valencia CF side defeated Olympique de Marseille. Three months on, Benítez is hoping to restore Liverpool's standing at home and in Europe, and his first task is to get past Austrian double winners Grazer AK.
Reds captain Steven Gerrard should recover from a tight hamstring to play at the Arnold Schwarzenegger stadium and his presence will be vital given the absences of suspended Igor Bišcan, injured Vladimír Šmicer and Danny Murphy, who is leaving the club. "We don't have the competition level they have as they've already played some matches and we have not," warned Benítez.
If media reports are to be believed, Michael Owen's participation and future at the club are also in doubt. The striker has yet to sign an extension to a contract due to expire next summer and Liverpool do not want to risk losing him on a free transfer. Benítez, however, insisted: "I have nothing to say about his contract. Michael has travelled and I can use him if I want."
GAK won their derby against SK Sturm Graz on Friday, a morale-boosting victory for Walter Schachner's team. Schachner, who has worries over Rene Aufhauser and Martin Amerhauser, described his side as "clear underdogs" but was hopeful they could do better than this time last year when they lost 3-2 on aggregate to AFC Ajax. "Maybe we'll be more lucky this time," he said. If so it will be the first success for an Austrian side over English opponents in 13 attempts.
Trapattoni names team
It is over 40 years since Benfica won the European Champion Clubs' Cup - and six seasons since they were in the Champions League group stage. Coach Trapattoni, a European champion with Juventus in 1985, named his starting lineup to face RSC Anderlecht 24 hours in advance of his first match at the Estádio da Luz and handed debuts to goalkeeper Yannick and full-back Alessandro Dos Santos. Trapattoni said: "Anderlecht are a very dangerous team on the counterattack."
Nuno Gomes, Carlitos, Alcides, Geovanni, Luisão and Mantorras are unavailable. Anderlecht coach Hugo Broos, meanwhile, is expected to make changes after the 2-0 defeat by R. Excelsior Mouscron on Friday. Pär Zetterberg and Govran Lovré could lose their places in midfield to Walter Baseggio and Junior, but "the defence will stay the same" according to Broos.
Elsewhere, the Gipedo Toumbas stadium is a 28-000 sell out for FC PAOK Thessaloniki's home leg against Maccabi-Tel Aviv FC. Dimitris Salpingidis has delayed joining Greece's Olympic squad and the same goes for Ghanaian international John Pantsil who will feature for the visitors.
Trabzonspor miss trio
FC Dynamo Kyiv face Turkish visitors in Trabzonspor, who overcame FC Skonto in the last round but will be without a trio of first-team players in Volkan Belkiroglu, Erdinç Yavuz and Tolga Seyhan. In the night's final match, PFC CSKA Moskva turn their attentions to Scottish visitors Rangers FC having overcome PFC Neftchi last week.
(BBC, Sporting Life, NewsNow, UEFA, BetHelp)