CSKA Moscow vs Real Madrid: Match Preview, Predictions, Venue & Where to Watch Details | Champions League 2018/19
In the aftermath of the goalless draw against Atletico, Lopetegui defended his team’s display stating, “We didn't win the game simply because we didn't manage to score, but overall, I think that we were by far the better side, particularly in the second half, in which we created several chances”. The coach went on to cite his team’s fatigue and the opponent’s extra day rest as a factor for Los Blancos failing to impose themselves in the first half.
With that in mind, Madrid travels to the Russian club, CSKA Moscow, where Varane lifted the World Cup this summer. The French defender will have to be at his best in the probable absence of Sergio Ramos, the Madrid captain, having injured himself over the weekend.
CSKA will look to cause an upset and get all three points, having lost out on the opening matchday, drawing the game against Viktor Plzen. Goncharenko doesn’t have an envious record against Madrid, having lost both his games in his time with Bate Borisov.
However, speaking ahead of the game, the coach declared his intent stating, “At the moment we're focusing more on the attack, but for tomorrow's game we have several possible systems”. The Belarusian may sense vulnerability in this Madrid side, in the absence of their big names, and it will be interesting what team he selects ahead of this tie.
CSKA Moscow - Real Madrid: Kick-off information
Date: 3rd October, 2018
Kick-off: 21:00 (local time), 12:35 AM (IST – 30th September)
Venue: Luzhniki Stadium
CSKA Moscow - Real Madrid: Team News
The news that made headlines was the retirement of Igor Akinfeev from international football. Victor Goncharenko complimented the Russian keeper stating, “As a fan, it's a shame, but as a coach, he'll be able to focus 100% on CSKA.” The Belarusian though added pointedly that he hoped his side wouldn’t have to call on Akinfeev’s services against Madrid.
Both the coach and the keeper were seen enjoying the training session ahead of their tie against Madrid. CSKA is currently fourth in their league and six points behind leader Zenit, and will look to carry their winning run into Europe having drawn the last time around.
The amount of injuries in the side means Lopetegui will have to shuffle his side. Navas may start in goal, with Odriozola probably stepping into the right back position. Nacho should partner Varane. It will be interesting to watch the Madrid midfield, with the possibility of Casemiro playing a more attacking role in support of Benzema and Asensio, with Modric and Kroos marshalling the centre.
Bale’s replacement is also a point of intrigue, with Mariano being a possible option. Vinicius Junior who made a cameo appearance in the derby has travelled with the squad. The news of the Welsh forward being cleared of any long-lasting thigh problem during the clash against Atletico will come as a welcome boost as well.
Los Blancos though will have to pull up their socks if they are to entertain hopes of returning home with three points. Madrid has been poor in the final third and they will have to start scoring if they are to give themselves a chance of a victory at the Russian capital.
CSKA Moscow - Real Madrid: Probable Line-ups
CSKA Moscow (5-3-2): Akinfeev (GK), Chernov, Nababkin, Efremov, Mario Fernandes, Jaka Bijol, Nishimura, Oblyakov, Vlasic, Chalov, Dzagoev
Real Madrid (4-3-3): Navas(GK); Odriozola, Carvajal, Varane, Nacho; Kroos, Casemiro, Modric; Vazquez/Mariano, Benzema, Asensio
CSKA Moscow - Real Madrid: Form Guide
Last 5 matches in all competitions:
CSKA Moscow: W-D-D-W-W
Real Madrid: D-L-W-W-D
CSKA Moscow - Real Madrid: Predictions
Moscow couldn't have chosen a better time to face Madrid. The European champions though, will feel that they come into their own into this competition and will be fierce enough to take the game to the home side. One can expect a close battle with Madrid probably edging it.
Predicted Score: 1-2