Man United v Bayer Leverkusen: David Moyes eyes Champions League glory
Man United v Bayer Leverkusen: David Moyes says he wants to win the Champions League in his first season in charge
David Moyes says he wants to win the Champions League in his first season in charge of Manchester United.
The Red Devils boss, who replaced Sir Alex Ferguson over the summer, begins his European adventure with a clash against Sami Hyypia’s Bayer Leverkusen at Old Trafford on Tuesday night.
Moyes has only tasted Champions League football on one previous occasion when his Everton side were eliminated in third-round qualifying by Villarreal in 2005.
And the 50-year-old Scot is relishing the challenge of managing in Europe’s premier club competition and wants to lift the trophy at his first attempt.
“I’m really excited about it,” said Moyes. “I’ve been excited since joining Manchester United, every game has offered a new challenge.
“I’m really looking forward to the Champions League. I’ve there before, with Everton, and we didn’t quite make the Group stages, but this is something different.
“I’m now managing a club which is used to getting to the final stages and we’ll try to do that again.
“I’ve been in the Premier League for a long time now. I’ve always wanted to get to the Champions League and I did everything I could at Everton to try and make that happen.
“I’ve now got another route in with Manchester United and I’m going to do everything I possibly can to win it. That’s the key.”
Man United v Bayer Leverkusen: Match facts
• For United this is their 18th consecutive Uefa Champions League campaign but for Moyes, it is his first taste of the group stage of a competition that the English title holders won twice under his predecessor, Ferguson.
• This is also the first Uefa Champions League fixture as a coach for Leverkusen’s Sami Hyypia, a winner as a player with Liverpool FC in 2005.
• Leverkusen overcame United on away goals when the clubs met for the first time in the 2001/02 semi-finals. The German side secured a 2-2 draw at Old Trafford before Oliver Neuville’s 45th-minute equaliser back in Germany cancelled out a Roy Keane goal (28), earning the Germans victory on away goals.
• Ryan Giggs is the only survivor in either squad of that 2002 meeting at Old Trafford while Phil Neville, now United’s first-team coach, was an 18th-minute substitute for his brother Gary. Giggs played in the return leg too, with Phil Neville an unused substitute. Dimitar Berbatov, a future United player, featured in both games for Leverkusen.