Borussia Dortmund vs Real Madrid: Champions League Match Preview
Mario Gotze will take centre stage for Borussia Dortmund on Wednesday night amid recent news of his imminent summer switch to Bundesliga title rivals Bayern Munich.
It is also likely that Mats Hummels will take his place at the centre of Dortmund's defence following a recent ankle ligaments injury; The German international completed the full ninety minutes of Dortmund's last two league games coming through unscathed.
Jose Mourinho is without the services of Marcelo, stretchered off at the weekend, so Fabio Coentrao will deputise in his absence. Meanwhile Luka Modric and Karim Benzema may require late fitness tests. Diego Lopez suffered a knock to his ribs on Saturday against Real Betis but Mourinho has confirmed he will play so Iker Casillas remains on the bench.
Real will be desperate for victory having seen close up the danger that Borussia Dortmund pose in their two previous group stage meetings. Last time Madrid visited Signal Iduna Park, the home side ran out 2-1 winners courtesy of goals from Lewandowski and Schmelzer whilst they could only muster a 2-2 draw at home.
Over their previous meetings, Madrid have not led across the whole 180 minutes, a worrying stat for fans, though Mourinho remains buoyant. "The four goals we conceded against Dortmund were a result of mistakes we made. I hope we will be more focused this time. We are stronger than before." stated Mourinho.
His confidence is not misplaced; Madrid have won twelve of their last fifteen games including two victories over arch rivals Barcelona. They have however looked less convincing on the Champions League stage, Galatasaray providing a brief scare in the quarter final stages and scraping through a tumultuous tie with Manchester United.
Meanwhile Dortmund have also been in recent good form, winning six of their last seven games in all competitions, bouncing back from relinquishing their Bundesliga title with admirable tenacity. In their weekend game against Mainz they dominated possession for the full 90 minutes, albeit leaving it late to put the game beyond doubt in a 2-0 victory.
Cristiano Ronaldo looks set to provide Madrid's most potent goalscoring outlet, already with11 vital goals in their European campaign to his name and he currently sits three strikes clear at the top of the tournaments goalscoring charts. For Dortmund Lewandowski looks dangerous having picked up five goals to his name in the tournament whilst Marco Reus will provide valuable support having attained four strikes to his name too.
The tie looks set for goals and Madrid will hope to be at their best to score more than Dortmund and break the Germans unbeaten record in this campaign to date.
Previous Head-to-Head in the CL this season:
Borussia Dortmund 2-1 Real Madrid
Lewandowski, Schmelzer ; Ronaldo
Real Madrid 2-2 Borussia Dortmund
Pepe, Ozil ; Reus, Arbeloa (O.G)
Likely Line Ups
Borussia Dortmund; Weidenfeller, Piszscek, Hummels, Subotic, Schmelzer; Gundogan, Bender, Blascykowski; Gotze, Reus, Lewandowski
Real Madrid; Diego Lopez, Ramos, Varane, Pepe, Coentrao; Alonso, Khedira; Ozil, Ronaldo, Di Maria; Higuain
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