Shakhtar Donetsk go in search of a hat-trick of Champions League victories over La Liga giants Real Madrid on Tuesday. The Ukrainian side are in real need of a result here, but beating Los Blancos again won’t be easy.
Where and when: Olympic National Sports Complex Stadium – 19 October, kick-off 20:00
Where you can see Shakhtar Donetsk vs. Real Madrid: BT Sport
Last time: Dentinho and Manor Solomon both scored in the second half as Shakhtar beat Real 2-0 in last season’s Champions League group stage.
Shakhtar Donetsk v Real Madrid Predictions and Preview
Shakhtar Donetsk may enter this fixture bottom of Group D after two games, but they should enter this clash against European royalty Real Madrid full of confidence. Especially given the upset Los Blancos suffered last time out.
Carlo Ancelotti and his players were humbled 2-1 at home by Moldovan minnows Sheriff Tiraspol on their last Champions League outing. The Madrid giants went down by the same scoreline in their following fixture away to Espanyol, so it was a long and painful international window for them.
Indeed, that misery was stretched out even further following the postponement of Real’s game against Athletic Bilbao at the weekend, caused by the late return of their South American contingent from international duty. There’s a very real chance Madrid could be caught cold here on a chilly night in Kiev.
That said, the extra break does at least give Real’s physios some extra time to work on a raft of the club’s injured stars. Marcelo and Marco Asensio could be among the players to return to action in this game, although the likes of David Alaba, Eden Hazard, Eduardo Camavinga and Isco are all out, along with Mariano Diaz, Gareth Bale and Dani Ceballos.
There’s little good news for Ancelotti to take into this game, especially given the fact that his team were beaten twice by Shakhtar last season. The Miners were unfortunate to finish third in last season’s Champions League group stage, having beaten Real 3-2 in Madrid and then 2-0 in the return.
Despite that, the hosts here are the 5/1 underdogs in this Shakhtar Donetsk v Real Madrid preview. They also lost to Sheriff and are bottom of Group D, with the visitors 3/5 favourites for the win. Considering their success against Real last season and their opponents’ injury problems, Shakhtar could prove solid value at 7/2 for the draw.
One to watch for Shakhtar Donetsk: Manor Solomon scored home and away against Madrid last season and is one to watch in the first goalscorer market in these Shakhtar Donetsk v Real Madrid predictions.
One to watch for Real Madrid: Karim Benzema carries much of Madrid’s hopes on his shoulders. The veteran French striker has scored nine goals in eight La Liga fixtures so far this term and will start as the favourite to break the deadlock on Tuesday.
Long shot: Shakhtar enjoyed great success against Los Blancos last season. The visitors are missing a raft of players, with the home team priced at 39/1 to repeat last term’s 2-0 victory at this stadium.