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Group E
Kick-off: 19:45 (BST)

A crunch game for both teams in Germany tonight with neither Stuttgart nor Lyon having picked up a point in their first two outings against Rangers and Barcelona and both coaches admit this is a must-win game.

“We need to hold our heads high and play our hearts out,” said Stuttgart’s Armin Veh.

“We worked hard all last season in order to get here, so we can’t let it end so quickly. We’re going into the game to win.”

However, it is not just in Europe that Stuttgart have been struggling; Saturday’s 4-1 defeat by Hamburg was their sixth in ten Bundesliga matches, leaving the Bundesliga champions in the bottom half of the table.

An injury list headed by striker Ciprian Marica, defender Arthur Boka and midfielder Thomas Hitzlsperger, hasn’t helped and although Veh welcomes back Fernando Meira from domestic suspension, the coach is focused on beating Lyon.

“We need to win our games against Rangers and Lyon,” he added. “Like us, Lyon began their campaign badly but they have found their stride now – we need to do the same.”

Lyon’s latest win came on Saturday when they earned a seventh victory in eight domestic outings with a 3-1 win against Monaco to take the outright Ligue 1 lead.

“Our last two league games were very good,” admitted coach Alain Perrin. “We showed real intensity, a fight that was lacking in our first two UEFA Champions League matches.”

Those both ended in 3-0 defeats, first at Barcelona then, more surprisingly, at home to Rangers, and Perrin is keen for the team to put those results behind them.

“This is our chance to make amends,” said the Lyon boss, who will be without suspended striker Fred, and midfielder Jérémy Toulalan who twisted his knee on Sunday having been rested for the league game.

“The games against Stuttgart will decide our destiny. I am realistic: our chances aren’t great but the team won’t give up, they’ll fight until the end,” Perrin continued.

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