[/caption]This brings a wealth of European experience to a team that some have neglected to consider as genuine threats to United. Carlo Ancelotti’s departure for London at the end of last season and the appointment of Leonardo in his place has injected freshness into those old bones, which was evident in their 3-2 away victory against Real Madrid in the group stages. They also possess a genuine attacking threat in the form of Ronaldinho and Alexandre Pato.United themselves have come into a relatively rich vein of form since the shock loss to Leeds in the FA Cup. Ironically, that defeat could prove profitable as it reduces the number of games to be played and lessens the disruptive influence which wholesale changes for cup matches bring to the side. Much will rest on the shoulders of Wayne Rooney and if he can mirror his recent form and receive support from the recently rejuvenated Nani among others, Milan should be confidently overcome.Chelsea, now under the watchful eye of Carlo Ancelotti, retain the same squad that has come so agonisingly close to glory these past two seasons; however, Mourinho’s Inter will prove a stern test to their ambitions. Leading Serie A by nine points, all focus will be on improving Inter’s relatively poor recent record in the competition. Nobody is better equipped to mastermind the downfall of his old club than than Mourinho, who will know many of the players intimately. Expect a tight defensive contest and a moment of brilliance from Drogba or Eto’o to decide the match-up.Although inconsistent at home and unable to beat their main domestic rivals, Arsene Wenger will fancy his side’s chances of progression. European football tends to offer players much more time and space on the ball, suiting Arsenal’s slick pass and move style of play. However, without a top-quality fit striker, their overall chances are severely restricted.The Spanish superpowers of Real and Barcelona will feel confident of progressing against both Lyon and Stuttgart. Real, after their extraordinary summer spending spree, will consider anything other than outright triumph as an abysmal failure – especially with their own Estadio Bernabéu hosting the final. These factors, combined with life in shadows of Barcelona, in the last year may be the key to them claiming their tenth European Cup on 22nd May.