Borussia Dortmund boss Peter Bosz does not expect Real Madrid to be any weaker in Tuesday’s Champions League clash despite their injury concerns.
Midfielder Toni Kroos is back for the trip to Signal Iduna Park but Marcelo, Karim Benzema, Mateo Kovacic and Theo Hernandez are all sidelined.
Madrid have endured a shaky start to their LaLiga title defence, winning only three of their opening six matches, while their quest to win a third Champions League in a row started with a less-than-convincing 3-0 win over APOEL.
Dortmund lost to Tottenham on matchday one but have won five of their six Bundesliga matches this season and boast a formidable record against Madrid, having not lost any of the last six meetings in Germany.
That record, combined with Zidane’s injury worries, has prompted some to make BVB favourites but Bosz is expecting a stern test.
“I don’t think Madrid are not good enough because of their injuries,” he told a news conference. “They have enough good players. They won’t be any worse.
“I like to watch Real Madrid. I like technical players. Since Zidane’s been there, they’ve had this kind of player and I like this way of playing football.”
Dortmund & Real Madrid meet again.
— Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) September 25, 2017
Midfielder Mario Gotze likewise anticipates a difficult match but says Dortmund’s high-intensity football under Bosz has him brimming with confidence.
“They’ve always been great matches against Real Madrid. We know about their situation. It’ll be a good game,” he said.
“We’re looking forward to a tough game and we have a lot of respect for them. We’re in very good form and we’ll have a lot of self-belief.
“The team is particularly good at pressing. I’ve never experienced it like this. You can see from our results in the Bundesliga that this is a very good idea, which I can identify with. I like having the ball, so it’s good for a midfielder.”
Bosz, however, has warned his side to be smart in the way they approach the match against the 12-time champions of Europe.
“It’s possible to play an aggressive pressing game against Real Madrid. But we have to do it in a good way,” he added.
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