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The 71-year-old manager is excited ahead of his Red Devils' visit to the Santiago Bernabeu, stating his belief that there is no bigger fixture in the Champions League

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has labelled his side's Champions League clash with Real Madrid the biggest fixture in the competition.

The Red Devils are set to take on the Spanish outfit at the Santiago Bernabeu on Wednesday evening in the first leg of the sides' last-16 tie.

And, with the teams involved having won Europe's premier cup competition 12 times between them, Sir Alex believes that the game is one of the most appealing in world football.

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He told Sky Sports: "United and Madrid have that romance about them and that honour and worldwide appeal so it probably is the biggest game you can get in the European Cup.

"I think as soon as the draw was made, there was that anticipation about the tie. It's a fantastic challenge for myself and it should be a fantastic match between two teams and clubs who embrace the best parts of football, with great reputations."

Jose Mourinho's side currently sit 16 points adrift of Barcelona in La Liga and the United boss expects that Los Blancos will be solely focused on winning the competition for the 10th time for that reason.

"I think Jose has set his targets firmly on the European Cup, no doubt about that," he declared.

"It can be hard for us but there's a bit of pressure for them, too. At this moment in time, we're involved in three [competitions]."

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