2 April, 2013 - 14:36

Champions League fixtures preview: Málaga CF vs Borussia Dortmund

Champions League fixtures preview: Málaga CF vs Borussia Dortmund

Málaga face Borussia for the first time in history, in an exciting fixture between two teams which have raised few eyebrows by reaching the last-8 stage of the tournament. Both teams were considered to be underdogs at the group stage, however both teams managed to qualify for the knockout round from the first place.

Borussia Dortmund visit Málaga in what appears to be their last chance of saving the season, as they have lost any chances of defending Bundesliga title and were eliminated from DFB cup. The Germans are considered to be the sure-fire favourites to win the game, after the brilliant attacking display delivered against Shakhtar Donetsk. It is necessary to mention Dortmund progressed to the knockout stage from the first place of Death Group, outplaying Real Madrid and Man City.

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Meanwhile Málaga are enjoying an impressive debut Champions League campaign and have a strong motivation for going as far as possible in the tournament, as they have been banned for all of European competitions next season by the UEFA. With all due respect to the Spaniards, despite outstripping Milan, Anderlecht and Zenit at the group stage and eliminating Porto in the last-16 round, they are likely to lose against fast and creative Dortmund attack (they netted 91 goals in 40 games this season). However it is to be recalled that no side has defeat Malaga at their home ground (the run of 13 games without defeat) and Borussia will need to bend every effort to break this trend.

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Recent Málaga form:

Málaga are currently lying in the sixth spot in La Liga one point ahead of seven-placed Valencia and 28 points behind leaders Baracelona. They have recorded a 3-1 away win over Rayo Vallecano in their last domestic match. The victory has put an end to a disappointing winless streak of four games and has undoubtedly lifted squad’s morale ahead of clash against Borussia.

Recent Borussia Dortmund form:

Borussia have beaten Stuttgart 2-1 at the Mercedes-Benz-Arena, to record their second successive win. They are occupying the second place in the Bundesliga table, four points ahead of Bayer Leverkusen and 20 points behind leaders Bayern Munich, who are several steps away from claiming Bundesliga title this season.

Málaga team news:

Manuel Pellegrini is expected to stick to the side that overcame Rayo on Saturday with young and hugely talented playmaker Isco performing attacking duties, Vitorino Antunes filling Eliseu’s boots at the left-back spot.

Joaquin set to move to the right wing, Julio Baptista to drop back into position of deep-lying forward and Javier Saviola to replace Pedro Morales up front in the starting line-up.

Borussia Dortmund team news:

Marcel Schmelzer is likely to take part in the upcoming fixture despite breaking nose against Stuttgart on Saturday.

Mats Hummels has returned to training following his injury, but will not be risked by Jurgen Klopp at the heart of Dortmund defense with Felipe Santana set to be used as his replacement. The German giants’ boss could also prefer Sven Bender and Ilkay Gundogan over Nuri Sahin and Sebastian Kehl in the midfield.

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Author: Basil Naumov

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