Real Madrid look to turn around a two goal deficit as they host Vfl Wolfsburg at Santiago Bernebeu for the second leg of the UEFA Champions League quarter final fixture.
The Los Blancos were completely outplayed by their German opponents in the first leg and the goals from Ricardo Rodríguez and Maximilian Arnold earned Wolfburg a priceless 2-0 win to defend in the return leg. Real Madrid were handed their first defeat in this Champions League campaign and Zinedine Zidane will be hoping that his team will be on the top of their game as they have a mountain to climb on Tuesday evening.
Real Madrid’s 4-0 win against Eibar earned them a sixth La Liga win in a row and now they have a real chance to challenge Barcelona for the league title after the Blaugrana fell to a surprise 1-0 defeat to Real Sociedad on the weekend. Real Madrid’s home form in the league this season is 14 wins, 1 draw and 2 losses in 17 matches so far.
In their Champions League campaign this season, Real Madrid have won 7, drawn 1 and lost 1 of their 9 matches so far. They are one of the high scoring sides in the competition with 23 goals and conceded just 5. And Cristiano Ronaldo is their top scorer with 13 goals to his name.
At home, they have a 100% win record at home with 4 out of 4 wins and are yet to concede a goal at Santiago Bernebeu. At the same time, Real have kept clean sheets in 7 of their 9 matches in the competition so far.
Fresh from the 2-0 home against Real Madrid, Wolfsburg went on to draw 1-1 with Mainz 05 in the weekend Bundesliga fixture. They are not in their best of the form coming into this match, with the win against Real Madrid, the only one in their last 5 matches in all competitions.
Wolfsburg have won in 7 and lost 2 from their 9 matches so far in Champions League this season. They are unbeaten at home this season and kept a clean sheet in 3 of them, while their away record in the competition is 2 wins and 2 defeats; both of the wins coming in their last 2 away matches.
Real Madrid: Team News
Zidane rotated his squad in the weekend La Liga fixture with the likes of Bale, Modric, Kroos, Danilo and Marcelo getting a rest. At the same time, Karim Benzema is injured and will miss the tie, while Rafael Varane still remains a doubt.
James Rodríguez and Isco started in the weekend and the Colombian was the start of the show and he could be in contention for a start ahead of Isco as Real chase 3 goals on Tuesday.
Real Madrid: Expected Starting Line-up (4-3-3)
Navas – Danilo, Pepe, Ramos, Marcelo – Kroos, Modric, Casemiro – James, Bale, Ronaldo.
Wolfsburg: Team News
Daniel Caligiuri is the only major absentee from the Wolfsburg side as he is nursing a groin injury. Naldo has made his return from injury against Real Madrid in the first leg and after playing a major role in that win and is likely to retain his place in the starting line-up.
Striker Bas Doost has also returned to fitness and head-coach Dieter Hecking is likely to start with the same line-up used in the first leg at Volkswagen arena.
Wolfsburg: Expected Starting Line-up (4-2-3-1)
Benaglio – Vieirinha, Naldo, Dante, Rodriguez – Arnold, Gustavo – Henrique, Arnold, Draxler – Schürrle.
Wolfsburg vs Real Madrid: Head-to-Head Stats
This will be only the second meeting between the two sides after last week’s meeting at Volkswagen arena.
Wolfsburg have played against Spanish opponents on two occasions in the Europa League and Madrid is their third opponent. Their overall record after 5 matches read 3 wins, 1 draw and 1 defeat. Wolfsburg haven’t won in their 2 visits to Spain after drawing and losing in each of those.
Real Madrid have a strong record against German oppositions at home as have won in 21 of the 28 matches so far, with further 4 draws and 4 defeats. They met Schalke in the round of 16 last season which they won by 3-1 and then Dortmund in the quarter finals, which end in a 3-0 win. However, they lost their away matches on both occasions.
Wolfsburg vs Real Madrid: Prediction
Real Madrid are once again heavy favorites, but any win won’t be enough to go through to their fifth consecutive semi-finals in the Champions League. Since they don’t have an away goal from the first leg, every goal they concede will put extra pressure on them. The equation is plain and simple, they have to win this by a 2 goal margin.
Wolfsburg will be unchanged from the first leg and will look to imply tactic that gave them a big win at home. At the same time, they are extremely poor on away games this season and won just 4 games on the road all season. And judging by the rate at which Madrid can score at home, they are in with a good chance to overturn the 2-0 deficit
My Prediction for this match is nervous Real Madrid win by a 3-0 score line and could offer good value of money to bet them to qualify for semis.
Recommend Bet: Real Madrid to win both halves @ 2.10