Hamburg, without a point so far in Group H, will be looking to make amends with the visit of Porto.
Coach Thomas Doll admitted: “It hurts a lot to look at the table. We must show that our place in this competition is justified.”
“The 4-1 loss at Porto was painful for us. I feel my players will show a completely different face on Wednesday.”
Much will depend on the form of Dutchman Rafael van der Vaart, who returned to the team two weeks ago after a two-month injury layoff and is set for his first Champions League appearance since December 2004.
“It is time to pick up points,” van der Vaart said. “In football, strange things happen. We are still hopeful of playing in Europe after the winter.”
“We do not want to become the football joke of Europe.”
Doll is still hampered by major injury problems. Bastian Reinhardt, Guy Demel, Raphael Wicky and Collin Benjamin have thigh injuries, Nigel de Jong recently underwent knee surgery, and David Jarolím has torn shoulder ligaments. To compound matters, recent Argentinian signing Juan Pablo Sorín is doubtful with a pelvic injury.
Porto coach Jesualdo Ferreira will be without 18-year-old playmaker Anderson, who suffered a fracture in his right fibula at the weekend.
“This is a tough setback for us,” said Ferreira.
Victory in Hamburg would take them above either CSKA Moscow or Arsenal into second spot in Group G, although Ferreira is not underestimating Hamburg.
“The Bundesliga side have great potential and they are much stronger than they have shown in this competition so far,” he insisted.
“They can explode into life in any match, so I hope it will not happen against us. We know this game will be very important for us in our fight for the first two places.”
Sascha Kirschstein; Mehdi Mahdavikia, Vincent Kompany, Joris Mathijsen, Thimothée Atouba; Piotr Trochowski, Benny Feilhaber, Rafael van der Vaart, Juan Pablo Sorín/Mario Fillinger; Boubacar Sanogo, José Paolo Guerrero.
Helton; Fucile, Pepe, Bruno Alves, Marek ?ech; Lucho González, Paulo Assunção, Raul Meireles; Ricardo Quaresma, Hélder Postiga, Lisandro López.