• Champions League

Kaka confident of Madrid win at Old Trafford

ESPN staff
March 4, 2013
Kaka was impressed with how Manchester United played in the first-leg against Real Madrid © Getty Images

Kaka says Real Madrid are confident of winning Tuesday's Champions League last 16 second-leg against Manchester United at Old Trafford.

The tie is evenly balanced after last month's 1-1 first-leg draw at Madrid's Estadio Santiago Bernabeu, with Danny Welbeck's away goal possibly giving Sir Alex Ferguson's side a slight advantage.

However, Kaka said in an interview with Real Madrid sponsors Bwin on Sunday that Jose Mourinho's men had left the first-leg with the feeling they had been the better team, and that they would progress to the quarter-finals in what should be a special evening's football.

"We had the feeling that we could have won the game, and also that we can go to England and win," he said. "'El Manchester' have a very strong group of players, but we are going to Old Trafford with confidence. I would say it is a very special game. The stadium is fantastic, so is the atmosphere and the fans."

Kaka said he had been most impressed with United's team ethic and also their attacking strength during the teams' first meeting.

"What stands out most for them is their team, they have tradition in Europe, and always go far in the competitions they play in," he said. "They also have really good individual players. I would say [Wayne] Rooney and [Robin] van Persie at this moment."

Kaka, who did not feature in the first leg, but did start Saturday's 2-1 La Liga win over domestic rivals Barcelona in the Clasico, said he felt he still had a lot to offer for Madrid.

"[I bring] the possibility to speed up the play, to counter-attack," he said. "At 30-years-old I can also add a lot of experience. Any footballer would want to play in a game like this."

The Brazil international, who scored twice in AC Milan's 3-2 Champions League semi-final first-leg loss at Old Trafford in 2007, picked his second that evening as his best ever in the competition.

"The most important goal of the competition was the second against Manchester in Old Trafford in 2007," Kaka said. "It was an incredible goal for me."

Asked for his favourite Champions League moment, Kaka picked out the final in Athens that same year.

"My best Champions League moment was when Milan won in 2007 against Liverpool," he said. "That was the biggest moment for me in the Champions League."

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