AEK coach Lorenzo Serra Ferrer will be looking looking to put the club’s domestic troubles to one side when they welcome Anderlect to Athens.
AEK began their campaign with a 3-0 1 defeat at Milan and following Saturday’s 1-0 league loss at rivals Olympiakos, could do with a tonic in the Olympic Stadium.
“We cannot look back at these things,” said Serra Ferrer. “The Olympiakos game is gone and we have an important match against Anderlecht.
The positive thing for us is that we have the chance to compete in the Champions League. We cannot linger on defeats, we must look forward.”
AEK, still without a win in the Champions League in 19 attempts, have been hit by the news that midfielder Emerson will be out for three weeks with a groin injury.
“Of course Emerson is an important player for us but we have to cope with these kinds of problems,” said Serra Ferrer. “I will consider all the players for the game against Anderlecht, all of them are ready and enthusiastic. We have several alternatives.
“Our motivation is huge because we are talking about the Champions League,” added the Spaniard. “We must go into the match with the same mentality as always – the attitude that we can win – while not thinking we are a weaker team because we have lost our last match.”
Emerson’s loss is offset by the return to fitness of midfielder Akis Zikos, and the return from suspension of defender Nikolaos Georgeas.
Anderlecht coach Franky Vercauteren, was in a positive frame of mind ahead of Tuesday’s encounter.
“We always play for three points but we know how difficult it is to achieve that in away games,” the coach said.
“If we win, it would be great for us. A draw would not be a bad result either and we would settle for that, but only if our efforts have not merited a win.”
Stefano Sorrentino; Evangelos Moras, Ifeanyi Udeze, Bruno Cirillo, Nikolaos Georgeas; Vladimir Ivi?, Akis Zikos, Vassilios Lakis, Julio Cesar; Nikolaos Liberopoulos, Andrija Delibasic.
Daniel Zitka; Anthony Vanden Borre, Jelle Van Damme, Nicolas Pareja, Olivier Deschacht; Yves Vanderhaeghe, Lucas Biglia, Ahmed Hassan, Bart Goor; Mbark Boussoufa, Nicolas Frutos.