Besnik Hasi is disappointed to be without captain Michal Pazdan when his Legia Warsaw side face the daunting task of hosting Borussia Dortmund on Wednesday.
Legia’s last involvement in the Champions League group stages came in the 1995-96 season, when they advanced to the last eight before being beaten 3-0 on aggregate by Panathinaikos.
No Polish side has reached the competition proper since Widzew Lodz in 1996-97, and Legia had to come through play-off ties with Zrinjski, Trencin and Dundalk in order to qualify for the draw, which saw them pitted against Dortmund, Sporting CP and defending champions Real Madrid.
Hasi acknowledged his side are the underdogs for Wednesday’s meeting with Thomas Tuchel’s side, and their task has been made harder by losing the services of Pazdan and striker Michal Kucharczyk through injury.
“Pazdan is a leader, our captain who has a calm and positive influence on the other players in defence. It is a pity not to have him,” said Hasi, who also pointed to Kucharczyk’s “power and speed” as being a big loss.
“Dortmund are one of the best teams in Europe, definitely they are better than Legia, but football is beautiful and you never know what will happen.
“I had the opportunity to coach against BVB two years ago with Anderlecht and we were in big trouble, were not able to move forward in the first 30 minutes as they kept us deep in defence.
“So I do know how difficult is to play against them.”