First-leg goals by Giggs & Rooney mean Sir Alex Ferguson's men hold the advantage as they aim to finish the job at Old Trafford and book a Wembley date against Spanish opposition
|Manchester United (4-4-2): Van der Sar; Rafael, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra; Nani, Scholes, Anderson, Park; Berbatov, Owen.
Manchester United have few injury problems and may even be able to recall Darren Fletcher after the midfielder made his long-awaited return from a virus by playing 45 minutes for the reserves last week. Wayne Rooney, however, is a doubt after missing training on Tuesday with a tight hamstring.
Of course Sunday’s match against Chelsea will undoubtedly be on Sir Alex Ferguson’s mind when he comes to picking his team and the Scot has indicated he will give Paul Scholes, Dimitar Berbatov and Michael Owen starts, although he may opt for a strong defence.
|Schalke (4-4-2): Neuer; Uchida, Metzelder, Howedes, Sarpei; Baumjohann, Matip, Papadopoulos, Jurado; Edu, Raul.
Benedikt Howedes remains a doubt, having missed Schalke’s last three games due to a stomach strain, and could join Christian Pander, Christoph Moritz, Klaas-Jan Huntelaar and Mario Gavranovic on the injured list.
- Leading 2-0 from the first leg Manchester United are aiming for their third Champions League final in four years having won the competition in 2008 (beating Chelsea on penalties in the final) before losing 2-0 to Barcelona in Rome the following season.
- The Premier league leaders warmed up for the second leg with a 1-0 defeat to Arsenal on Sunday, a result that means all four Champions League semi-finalists lost at the weekend.
- However, the Red Devils are unbeaten at Old Trafford this season, indeed their last home defeat was over a year ago to Chelsea in the Premier League when the Blues won 2-1 on April 3.
- In Europe this season, United’s home record is won three (beating Bursaspor, Marseille and Chelsea) and drawn two (against Valencia and Rangers).
- Ryan Giggs (pictured right) scored the opener in Gelsenkirchen with a goal that saw him become the oldest ever goalscorer in the competition. At 37 years and 148 days he beat the previous record held by Filippo Inzaghi by 62 days.
- Despite heading to Old Trafford two goals down, Schalke can take heart from their last Champions League away trip which saw them hit five at San Siro on their way to ousting holders Inter.
- However, only two sides have ever overcome a first-leg home defeat in the latter stages of the competition. Inter and Ajax have both managed it, but the bad news for Schalke is both teams lost only 1-0 in the first leg.
- Schalke defender Atsuto Uchida made history in the first leg by becoming the first Japanese player ever to appear in the Champions League semi-finals.
- The visitors' preparations for the game saw them lose 4-1 away to Bayern Munich. That defeat is Schalke’s third in a row and leaves them in 10th place in the Bundesliga, just six points off the bottom three.
- Schalke have five players within one yellow card of missing the final, should they beat United, they are: Raúl González, Kyriakos Papadopoulos, Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, Hans Sarpei and José Manuel Jurado.