Champions League Preview: Real Madrid - APOEL
The Cypriot minnows' fairytale run in the Champions League appears to be at an end as they travel to the Spanish capital hoping to overturn a 3-0 deficit from the first leg
By Karthick Arvinth
Altintop, Pepe, Varane, Coentrao
Callejon, Kaka, Ronaldo
Poursaitidis, Kaka, Jorge, Boaventura
Charalambidis, Marcinho, Manduca
Real Madrid boss Jose Mourinho looks set to make significant changes to the team that thrashed Osasuna at the weekend for the Champions League quarterfinal second leg against APOEL on Wednesday.
Ricardo Carvalho and Lassana Diarra are both out injured, but Jose Callejon has shaken off an ankle problem and could feature. Xabi Alonso returns from suspension, but may be rested on the bench, while Nuri Sahin could deputise for Sami Khedira, who sat out the Osasuna game with a virus.
Injury-hit winger Angel Di Maria is likely to be named on the bench again as he continues his recovery towards full match fitness.
APOEL will be without Marcelo Oliveira and Ivan Trickovski due to injuries sustained in the first leg in Cyprus, although Gustavo Manduca is available after serving a one-match ban. Savvas Poursaitides (thigh) and Nektarios Alexandrou (groin) also picked up knocks in the first leg, but the duo are likely to be fit in time for the clash.
||DID YOU KNOW?|
- Real Madrid has a near-perfect record in this season's Champions League, winning eight of the nine games played so far.
- Los Blancos have emerged victorious in 26 of the 27 European ties in which they have held a lead from the first leg.
- Madrid's 3-0 triumph in the fixture in Nicosia was its 200th victory in the European Cup/Champions League.
- APOEL finished third in the Cypriot top-flight's regular season before the league split into three groups of four. It is now involved in playoff action against the rest of the top four - AEL Limassol, Omonia and Anorthosis Famagusta - to determine the destination of the title.
- The Cypriots have won six of their last eight matches in all competitions.
- Esteban Solari (pictured right) has netted 55 goals in 98 league games over two spells for APOEL, who have never lost when he has scored.
Top 3 Predictions
Real Madrid 5-0 APOEL
- 18.24 %
Real Madrid 4-0 APOEL
- 15.41 %
Real Madrid 8-0 APOEL
- 11.34 %
|UEFA Champions League (UCL)||Apr 4, 2012||Real Madrid 5 - APOEL 2|
|UEFA Champions League (UCL)||Mar 27, 2012||APOEL 0 - Real Madrid 3|
|Dec 7, 2013||CD Olímpic de Xàtiva 0 - Real Madrid 0||ESPC|
|Nov 30, 2013||Real Madrid 4 - Valladolid 0||LIGA|
|Nov 27, 2013||Real Madrid 4 - Galatasaray 1||UCL|
|Nov 23, 2013||Almeria 0 - Real Madrid 5||LIGA|
|Nov 9, 2013||Real Madrid 5 - Real Sociedad 1||LIGA|
|22||Ángel Di María||Midfielder|
|10||Marcinho da Silva||Midfielder|
Times In EDT
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed