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Real to miss Beckham versus Porto

London: Holders AC Milan, beaten finalists Juventus and favourites Real Madrid will all be looking to build on their winning starts when Champions League action returns this week.

Milan, who defeated Ajax Amsterdam 1-0 at the San Siro a fortnight ago, travel to Spain to face Celta Vigo in Group H on Wednesday.

Joint top of Serie A with Juventus and AS Roma after cruising to a 3-0 win over Lecce, everything is going smoothly for Carlo Ancelotti’s European champions on the pitch.

Off it, the desire of Brazil forward Rivaldo to leave the club in search of regular first-team football has dominated the club’s agenda.

Group rivals Ajax should collect their first win at home to Bruges.

Real Madrid will be looking to stamp their authority on Group F by winning at UEFA Cup holders Porto.

Still seen as the team to beat despite Milan edging Juventus in last season’s all-Italian final, Real will look to maintain their flying start after trouncing Olympique Marseille 4-2.

Real will be without midfielder David Beckham after the England captain suffered a foot injury during Saturday’s dismal 0-2 league defeat by Valencia.

Beckham’s below-par performance was matched by Zinedine Zidane and Ronaldo, though the latter two are likely to find a higher gear in Portugal.

Group D leaders Juventus should notch a second win when they travel to Greece to play Olympiakos on Tuesday after opening with a 2-1 victory over Galatasaray.

Juventus striker David Trezeguet should return after missing Saturday’s 2-0 win at Reggina.

The Frenchman will partner Marco Di Vaio in attack after the former Parma striker scored and impressed as he stood in for the injured Alessandro Del Piero on Saturday.

Rivaldo stays

Meanwhile, Milan said on Monday that Rivaldo will be staying with them after all, despite last week agreeing to cancel the player’s contract.

After announcing he had cancelled his contract with Milan last week Rivaldo, who has not featured for Milan in Serie A or the Champions League this season, had said he was considering offers from English clubs.

(Reuters)

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