Dortmund were beaten 3-1 by Tottenham on matchday one, meaning they have to play catch up to make it out of the group. They have, however, made the perfect response back in Germany, winning their last three matches with 14 goals scored and just one conceded. They currently sit top of the Bundesliga standings.
Los Blancos made a no-nonsense start to their defence of the trophy with a routine 3-0 win over group minnows APOEL, but with all other teams penciling in wins over the Cypriots, it will be their results against the German and English sides that will really count.
Madrid relied on two goals from young midfielder Dani Ceballos to earn a 2-1 win over Deportivo Alaves at the weekend, and while the Spaniard said “it was the debut that I dreamed of”, he also highlighted the team’s lack of a cutting edge at the moment.
“We’re not great in front of goal but the important is that we create chances in front of goal,” Ceballos added. “We need to close games off quicker. We have many games
ahead of us. If we all pull in the same direction we can move forward as a unit.”
Dortmund midfielder Mario Götze said the team “are all playing at a good level and trying to absorb [manager] Peter Bosz’s philosophy” after enjoying a perfect warm-up with goals from Max Philip, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, and Julian Weigl in the 6-1 win over Gladbach.
We know it’ll be a mammoth task against Real,” Götze added. “But we’re playing at home and have always played quite well against Madrid. We’re going to prepare well because we know how important this game is. It’s definitely an interesting clash, that’s for sure.”