Mon 30 Oct 2017, 15:03
The two sides lock horns on Wednesday 1 November on SuperSport 3 (DStv Channel 203) and DStv Now at 21:45.
Don’t miss the action when Tottenham Hotspur and Real Madrid fight it out in Group H for direct passage into the Champions League last 16 at Wembley Stadium on Wednesday 1 November on SuperSport 3 (DStv Channel 203) and on DStv Now (Kick-off 21:45).
Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane said in a newspaper interview last week that the Champions League Group H clash against Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley on Wednesday evening will be like a ‘Cup Final’. He isn’t far off the mark.
It is honours even after a penalty and an own goal led to a 1-1 draw in their first encounter in the Spanish capital and Tottenham have certainly starting to show they belong in the Champions League.
Nothing separates the two teams in Group H either, with identical records after three outings. Both are well clear (six points) of Borussia Dortmund and Apoel.
While there is a strong likelihood both teams will still advance irrespective of the result in London, the group winners would have the added advantage of being seeded for the last 16 draw on 11 December.
Serial champions Real have won both of their previous away games against the north Londoners and Spurs have yet to keep a clean sheet in five European games at Wembley.
Spurs appear to still be finding their feet at the iconic 90 000-seater stadium and the psychological lift that visiting players get when visiting the traditional home of English football can never be discounted.
The Lillywhites have an incredible propensity for scoring goals despite not enjoying the lion’s share of possession and have proved lethal on the counter-attack. The way in which they completely ripped Liverpool to shreds 10 days ago was adequate testimony to that.
The psychological games will no doubt abound in the build-up to this classic fixture and much will revolve no doubt around the confrontation between two of the world’s best strikers in the game, Christiano Ronaldo (Madrid) and Harry Kane (Spurs).
Kane, it seems, is battling niggling fitness issues though, so it came as no surprise that manager Mauricio Pochettino put him on ice last weekend for the Premier League clash against Manchester United at Old Trafford and dragged Fernando Llorente into the mix.
Spurs also welcome back their talisman Dele Alli, who is finally eligible for selection after a three-match European ban imposed following their Europa Cup exit to Belgian side Gent last season.
Neither lethal goal scoring ‘machine’ need to be shown directions into a six-yard box and are the joint leading scorers in the Champions League this term. Both have found the net five times.
The pair feature on a list which includes Lionel Messi, Neymar, Edinson Cavani, Romelu Lukaku and Philippe Coutinho, to name but a few.
Whether under-achievers Tottenham have finally ‘grown up’ and how ready they are to take the step up and stand shoulder to shoulder with the giants of European football, could well be determined under the Wembley lights on Wednesday.
Potential Game Changers:
Tottenham Hotspur: Hugo Lloris, Harry Kane, Dele Alli, Christian Eriksen, Son Heung-min, Moussa Sissoko, Fernando Llorente.
Real Madrid: Christiano Ronaldo, Luka Modric, Karim Benzema, Lucas Vasquez, Marco Asensio, Isco.
Form (Last Five):
Spurs 2 West Ham Utd 3, Spurs 4 Liverpool 1, Real Madrid 1 Spurs 1, Spurs 1 Bournemouth 0, Huddersfield 0 Spurs 4.
Fuenlabrada 0 Real Madrid 2, Real Madrid 3 Eibar 0, Real Madrid 1 Spurs 1, Getafe 1 Real Madrid 2, Real Madrid 2 Espanyol 0.
Champions League 2017 - Leading Goal Scorers:
5 - Harry Kane (Spurs), Christiano Ronaldo (Real). 4 - Wissam ben Yedder (Sevilla), Edinson Cavani (PSG). 3- Neymar (PSG), Mohamed Salah (Liverpool), Roberto Firmino (Liverpool), Cenk Tosun (Besiktas), Lionel Messi (Barcelona), Dimitri Oberlin (Basel), Vincent Aboubaker (Porto), Edin Dzeko (Roma), Romelu Lukaku (Man Utd). 2 - Quincy Promes (Spartak), Philippe Coutinho (Liverpool), Kylian Mbappe (PSG), Eden Hazard (Chelsea), Joshua Kimmich (Bayern), Ryan Babel (Besiktas), Michy Batshuayi (Chelsea), Marcus Rashford (Man Utd), Felipe Pardo (Olympiakos), Raheem Stirling (Man City), Mario Mandzukic (Juventus), Gabriel Jesus (Man City).
Group H (Played, Won, Drawn, Lost, GD, Pts):
Tottenham Hotspur 3 2 1 0 +5 7
Real Madrid 3 2 1 0 +5 7
Borussia Dortmund 3 0 1 2 -4 1
Apoel FC 3 0 1 2 -6 1
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By Trevor Cramer