Real Madrid travel to Italy to face a Roma side in tuesday’s Group G Champions League encounter.
Both teams have secured nine points from their four group fixtures this season, and a win for either would see them advance to the next stage of the competition with one match to spare.
The Italian team have five ponts more than third-placed CSKA Moscow in Group G, and will qualify for the round of 16 with a point, providing that CSKA do not defeat Viktoria Plzen in the night’s other match.
They have also actually won seven of their last 11 games in all competitions, suffering just two defeats, with the loss at Udinese ending a five-match unbeaten run.
Roma have won their last three group matches, meanwhile, thrashing Viktoria Plzen 5-0 on at home before dispatching CSKA home and away. This is the first time that they have won three straight European matches for nine years, and Eusebio Di Francesco’s side will be looking for another positive result against Real Madrid on Tuesday night.
The Italians got to the semi-finals of last season’s Champions League before losing to Liverpool, defeating Barcelona along the way to make the final four. It is hard to imagine that they will repeat that run this term, but anything can happen in the knockout round of the competition.
Daniele De Rossi has not played since the end of October due to a knee problem, meanwhile, and is expected to miss out once again.
Kostas Manolas is still out with an ankle injury. Javier Pastore and Diego Perotti are also both on the sidelines, but Lorenzo Pellegrini and Aleksandar Kolarov are fit, with the pair shaking off injuries to play against Udinese.
Edin Dzeko and Cengiz Under should boty start after being rested over the weekend.
Roma possible starting eleven:
Olsen; Santon, Fazio, Jesus, Kolarov; N’Zonzi, Cristante; Florenzi, Pellegrini, Under; Dzeko
Real Madrid were defeated 3-0 by Eibar on Saturday in La Liga and will be looking to bounce back with a win when they travel to Roma this week. Los Blancos had won all four of their matches under the leadership of Santiago Solari ahead of the international break, but were well beaten at Eibar on Saturday afternoon.
Solari’s top the group only on goal difference however, and know that a victory against Roma would see them qualify for the round of 16 as group winners. That said, Real Madrid will also qualify with a defeat if CSKA fail to beat Plzen in Group G’s other match.
The multiple-time European champions opened their 2018-19 Champions League campaign with a 3-0 win over Roma on matchday one, but then suffered a 1-0 defeat at CSKA during a very difficult period. The Madrid giants have won their last two in the competition though, beating Plzen both home and away.
Madrid are gunning for their fourth straight Champions league trophy but that seems unlikely due to their shaky form this season and perhaps absence of talisman Cristiano Ronaldo.
Casemiro and Nacho remain on the sidelines, while Alvaro Odriozola was injured against Eibar. Dani Carvajal will return to the starting lineup after his injury spell.
Isco and Lucas Vazquez could be welcomed back into the XI at the expense of the out-of-form Marco Asensio and Dani Ceballos.
Real Madrid possible starting eleven:
Courtois; Carvajal, Varane, Ramos, Marcelo; Isco, Kroos, Modric; Lucas, Benzema, Bale
Head To Head
Tuesday will be the 12th meeting between Roma and Real Madrid in European competition. Los Blancos lead the head-to-head seven wins to three, with just one of their 11 meetings finishing all square