Champions League draw

Arsenal land AC Milan

December 16, 2011
By ESPNsoccernet staff

The draw for the last-16 of the Champions League has taken place and Chelsea have been drawn against Napoli, while AC Milan were paired with Arsenal.

Wenger v Milan
GettyImagesArsene Wenger's side beat AC Milan in 2008

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The Premier League duo have been handed the toughest tests of the draw, with Napoli seeing off Manchester City in the group stages, although the Gunners did beat Milan 2-0 at the San Siro to progress in the knockout stages in 2008.

Arsenal club secretary David Miles was upbeat about the testing draw, highlighting his side's impressive record against Italian opposition and declaring it the ''pick of the round''.

''There were probably other teams we would have preferred but the last time we played them in the knockout stage, in '07-08, we actually went through and won 2-0 in the San Siro,'' he said.

''We also knocked out, in fairly recent history, Roma and Inter Milan. It's going to be tough. Everyone has earned the right to get to this stage but nevertheless, we're confident and it's going to be two great games. I would guess it's probably the pick of the round.''

Chelsea secretary David Barnard admitted Napoli represented a tough draw for the Blues.

''It will be difficult having seen Napoli when they were in the same group as Man City,'' he said. ''Unfortunately City are no longer with us which reflects the quality of Napoli. It's a new experience for us with this club. Andre has experience in Italy though from when he was with Inter so he know the ins and outs of Napoli.''

Elsewhere, holders Barcelona have been drawn against German side Bayer Leverkusen, who finished second in Chelsea's group.

Manchester United's conquerors FC Basel, in the knockout round for the first time, have been handed a tie against Bayern Munich, while 2010 winners Inter Milan will meet French champions Marseille.

Cypriot debutants APOEL Nicosia will fancy their chances against knockout stage regulars Lyon, and the two Russian clubs will face teams from Iberia as CSKA Moscow take on Real Madrid and Zenit St Petersburg will meet Benfica.