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Group C
Real Madrid v Milan

Should the Champions League holders fail to secure three points and Dortmund win at home to Lokomotiv Moscow, the Germans will go second in the table, leaving qualification out of the Spaniards hands.

Milan have already qualified for the quarter-finals as group winners.

Realmay have to go into tonight’s match without world player of the year Ronaldo. The Brazilian suffered an ankle strain in Real’s 4-1 defeat of Racing Santander at the weekend and faces a late fitness test. Guti stands by to partner Raul.

Fernando Hierro is absent with injured knees, so Ivan Helguera will play alongside Francisco Pavon in central defence. Fernando Morientes is also unavailable due to injury.

Milan are likely to rest players and coach Carlo Ancelotti has omitted Filippo Inzaghi from his squad. Rivaldo is likely to partner Andriy Shevchenko up front.

Kakha Kaladze has a pulled hamstring and Alessandro Costacurta replaces him in defence.

The game sees the return of Fernando Redondo to Madrid. The Argentinian twice won the Champions league with the Merengues.

Although already qualified, Ancelotti confirmed the Rossoneri would play to win.

Clarence Seedorf, also returning to the Bernabeau, said: “Madrid are the most powerful team we can face at the moment, with a lot of quality. We’ll try to play a good match; it will be a great show.”

A sentiment not lost on Madrid coach Vicente del Bosque. He said: “I think Milan will come to win, to play well and to dignify the Champions League. It is important for the competition that they try to beat us.”

Probable Teams
Milan: Dida, Dario Simic, Alessandro Nesta, Alessandro Costacurta, Paolo Maldini, Gennaro Gattuso, Andrea Pirlo, Clarence Seedorf; Rui Costa, Rivaldo, Andriy Shevchenko.
Real Madrid: Iker Casillas, Michel Salgado, Francisco Pavon, Ivan Helguera, Roberto Carlos, Luis Figo, Claude Makelele, Flavio Conceicao, Zinedine Zidane, Guti, Raul

Borussia Dortmund v Lokomotiv Moscow

Coach Matthias Sammer is understandably desperate for a victory.

“Iam hoping for an attractive match although I am fearful against what is a very well-organised team defensively,’ said Sammer.

‘I believe it will be a very tight match but we definitely need a win.”

But Dortmund go into the game without Tomas Rosicky. Their playmaker has a thigh injury. Also out is Jorg Heinrich, with torn knee ligaments. Howevver, captain Stefan Reuter and midfielder Lars Ricken are both available having recovered from injury.

With only one point from four games, Lokomotiv still have a slim chance of progressing to the next stage but coach Yuri Semin has already discounted his team’s chances.

“We know that we have no chance of qualification,’ he admitted.

But Semin added: “We will fight to the end.”

The Muscovites are missing captain Dmitry Loskov through suspension and defender Gennady Nizhegorodov. But midfield players Marat Izmailov and Jacob Lekgetho and defender Oleg Pashinin are added to the squad.

Probable teams
Borussia Dortmund: Jens Lehmann, Ahmed Reda Madouni, Stefan Reuter, Christian Woerns, Christoph Metzelder, Lars Ricken, Torsten Frings, Sebastian Kehl, Dede, Jan Koller, Ewerthon
Lokomotiv Moscow: Sergei Ovchinnikov, Jakob Lekgetho, Sergei Ignashevich, Oleg Pashinin, Vadim Yevseyev, Dmitry Sennikov, Bennett Mnguni, Marat Izmailov, Vladimir Maminov, Julio Cesar, Ruslan Pimenov.

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