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Mourinho anticipates gallant Galatasaray

Real Madrid head coach Jose Mourinho is expecting a challenging battle with Galatasaray in the quarter-finals of the UEFA Champions League.

With Madrid seemingly out of the running to retain their La Liga title, the Spanish giants have now turned their focus toward European glory.

Madrid will face Galatasaray in the final eight of the competition after scraping past Manchester United in the previous round.

The nine-time champions managed to avoid fierce rivals Barcelona and last year’s finalists Bayern Munich but Mourinho does not believe the club received an easy draw.

“I’ve participated in the quarter finals of the Champions League for many years, and there is one constant that never changes, the quality of the opposition,” Mourinho said.

“The last eight teams are there for a reason. It is not just that they have managed to get out of the group stages but they have also managed to win a knockout tie.

“It is a competition that begins with so many good sides and when only eight are left, they are there for a good reason.

“There was no reason to be nervous about the draw because every possible opponent would have been tough.

“Obviously some sides have a slightly different standing in the game, but every possible opponent was tough, so that is why I was calm.”

The 50-year old has been impressed after already casting his eye over their opponents in anticipation of their first-leg meeting at the Bernabeu in April.

“We are up against Galatasaray, another domestic champion for us, the fourth champion that we have faced in the competition this season,” he added.

“We had already been working on possible opponents, my staff were present in the previous round of matches watching each game, and I already had some information about Galatasaray.”

Mon 25 March, 2013
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