Borussia Dortmund head to Real Madrid in UEFA Champions League Group H on Wednesday night looking to punch their ticket into the UEFA Europa League last 32 (kick-off: 20:45 CET/19:45 GMT).


Dortmund were Champions League finalists as recently as 2012/13, when they lost to Bayern Munich in the final at Wembley, but Peter Bosz’s men cannot join their Bundesliga cohorts in the knock-out stages of this season’s competition having lost three of their five games on the continent, with a pair of draw against APOEL accounting for their two points to date. Draws have been the order of the day in the Bundesliga of late, too, with Matchday 13’s incredible 4-4 with Schalke in the Revierderby followed by a 1-1 share of the spoils at Bayer Leverkusen on Saturday. That match cost BVB Maximilian Philipp for the foreseeable future, with the forward twisting ligaments in his knee. He joins Mario Götze and Marco Reus on the sidelines. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will return to the team on Wednesday having missed the Leverkusen game with suspension – a welcome boost as BVB seek to better APOEL’s result against Tottenham Hotspur in the other group game.

Record 12-time defending European champions Real haven’t been in vintage form themselves of late, with Saturday’s 0-0 draw at Athletic Bilbao leaving them eight points off Barcelona’s atop La Liga. Cristiano Ronaldo has only scored twice domestically, but eight goal in Europe mean BVB can ill afford to take the Portuguese lightly. Ronaldo should be partnered by Karim Benzema in attack with Gareth Bale and Marco Asensio injured.

Watch: Highlights of Dortmund’s incredible 4-4 draw with Schalke!

Probable line-ups

Real Madrid: Navas – Carvajal, Ramos (c), Varane, Marcelo – Kroos, Casemiro, Modric – Isco – Ronaldo, Benzema
Absentees: Asensio (muscular), Bale (calf)
Coach: Zinedine Zidane

Dortmund: Bürki – Bartra, Sokratis, Toprak, Schmelzer (c) – Kagawa, Sahin, Guerreiro – Yarmolenko, Aubameyang, Pulisic
Absentees: Philipp (knee), Castro (ankle), Reus (light training), Götze (ankle ligaments), Piszczek (knee), Durm (hip), Rode (pelvis), Isak (knee)
Coach: Peter Bosz

Match stats

  • Dortmund are guaranteed UEFA Europa League football if they get a better result against Real than APOEL do against Tottenham.
  • Aubameyang is BVB’s top scorer this season with 17 goals, six more than Real’s chief goal-getter Ronaldo.
  • Ronaldo has, though, scored in each of the previous five Group H games to date.
  • Christian Pulisic made his 50th Bundesliga appearance in Dortmund’s 4-4 draw with Schalke, becoming the youngest non-German ever to reach that milestone.
  • Dortmund are contesting the Champions League group stages for the sixth time in seven seasons.
  • Real are unbeaten in home Champions League group games. With two draws at the Bernabeu, BVB have the best record of all European teams in the Spanish capital at this stage of the competition.

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