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Champions League Team Of The Matchday: Round Of 16 Second Leg

Best Formation: 4-2-2-2

Goalkeeper

Hugo Lloris - Olympique Lyonnais

The France international was called into action within 20 seconds of play commencing against Real Madrid last week and rarely made a slip all night as Les Gones forced their way through to the last eight. Lloris will feel he should have done better on Cristiano Ronaldo’s goal, which passed through his legs, but his handling under pressure was faultless throughout. A contender for best goalkeeper in the world?


Defence

Emmanuel Eboue - Arsenal

Although he did not start the game against Porto, the Ivorian came on to great effect for Arsene Wenger's side. He provided penetration from deep and options on the right, capping off a fine cameo with a well-taken breakaway goal. Eboue has fully turned the corner at the Emirates and is now a firm favourite.



Walter Samuel - Inter

'The Wall''s methods were sometimes illegal against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, at one point he literally wrestled Didier Drogba to the ground off the ball, but always effective as the Italian champions held the Blues goalless at home for the first time this season. The Argentinian made a number of smart blocks and was a major force in the air in an uncompromising individual display.


Cris - Olympique Lyonnais

Another figure in the Lyon side to make an uncertain start at the Bernabeu, the Brazilian defender was in magnificent form for the final 70 minutes and is probably one of the major reasons the French side progressed. Won countless headers and was strong in each challenge against los Blancos


Benoit Tremoulinas - Bordeaux

Another excellent display from one of the rising stars of the game. Tremoulinas played as more of a winger than a full-back against Olympiacos, charging forward at every opportunity. He fizzed in a number of terrific crosses, saving the best for last for Chamakh's late winner.



Midfield

Keisuke Honda - CSKA Moscow

What a player. At 23, there's a lot more to come from the Japan international and Asia's new darling. He created numerous chances against Sevilla over the two legs, always looked comfortable in possession and scored with a red-hot free kick. Could turn out to be a wonderful signing for the Army Men.

Wesley Sneijder - Inter

Player of the matchday? Certainly a strong contender. Sneijder showed amazing vision throughout the win at Stamford Bridge, both through penetrative balls and set-pieces. The Dutchman eventually released Samuel Eto'o with an exquisite left-footed pass for the decisive goal. Comfortable on the ball and aggressive, the Netherlands international is close to the complete midfield player.




Attack

Lionel Messi - Barcelona

Yet another masterful performance from the Ballon d’Or incumbent, as Barca blew Stuttgart away. His first goal was a work of art as he ran half of the length of the pitch to rifle home, before providing a dream pass to Toure as part of the second goal. He is unplayable on this form and could have had a hat-trick or more.


Stevan Jovetic - Fiorentina

The Montenegro international emphasised his credentials as one of the most electrifying players in this season's Champions League with a virtuouso performance against Bayern Munich. Showing courage, strength and deftness of touch, 'JoJo' was too much for the Germans to handle, as his double helped la Viola to a win on the night.

Nicklas Bendtner - Arsenal

A fine hat-trick against Porto to repay Wenger's faith. Like any good striker he got into the right positions and capitalised and did well besides dropping deep to link with the midfield.
He has since continued his fine displays in the Premier League and is in a rich vein of form as the run-in approaches.

Wayne Rooney - Manchester United

England's best player scored a great centre-forward's goal against Milan as he smartly and somewhat bullishly headed in Neville's cross in the early stages. His second was laid on a plate and he finished with a aplomb. Single-handedly destroyed the European ambitions of the once mighty Rossoneri.




Line-Up:


Lloris

Eboue        Samuel         Cris   Tremoulinas

Sneijder        Honda

Messi                                           Jovetic

Bendtner     Rooney


Honourable Mentions:

Lucio, Thiago Motta - Inter
Samir Nasri, Andrey Arshavin - Arsenal
Florent Malouda - Chelsea
Bastian Schweinsteiger, Arjen Robben - Bayern Munich
Thomas Necid - CSKA Moscow
Cesar Delgado, Miralem Pjanic - Olympique Lyonnais
Yoann Gourcuff - Bordeaux
Diego Perotti - Sevilla
Yaya Toure - Barcelona
Ji Sung Park, Darren Fletcher - Manchester United