|UEFA Champions League 2014-15|
| PFC Ludogorets Razgrad
||vs|| Real Madrid
ScheduleWednesday, 1 October 2014 at 18:45 GMT / 19:45 UK / 00:15 IST
VenueStadion Vasil Levski (Sofia)
Next Wednesday, 1st of October 2014, the current European champions, Real Madrid, will travel more than two thousand kilometers East to measure forces with Ludogorets at the Stadion Vasil Levski in the capital city of Bulgaria, Sofia, for the second round of the 2014-15 UEFA Champions League edition.
Real Madrid started their Champions League campaign at full speed as they hammered the Swiss champions Basel at Santiago Bernabéu by 5-1 for the first match of the group stage. In contrast to their bumpy start at La Liga, Los Blancos shown a great display of power and didn’t allow Basel to leave Madrid with a smile on their faces. Led by Cristiano Ronaldo, Real Madrid have been slowly recovering from their less impressive season start and managed to score no more no less than twenty goals on their last four official matches.
The arrival of James Rodriguez and Toni Kroos during the Summer transfer window caused Carlo Ancelotti a “tactical headache”, who struggled to find a system where he would be able to include the newcomers into the team of highly talented players that were already in the team. After some confusing performances, the Italian manager opted for a system quite similar to a classic 4-4-2 approach, with two centre midfielders (Kroos and Modric), two wide players (Bale and James) and with Ronaldo running free behind the centre forward, Karim Benzema. So far, his new tactical approach has been working smoothly and the team has been managing to overcome all their opponents fairly easily.
For the match against Ludogorets, Ancelotti will still not be able to rely on the contribution of Sami Khedira and Jesé, who are sidelined due to injury. The Brazilian born Portuguese international centre back Pepe is also in doubt for next Wednesday’s clash, since he is not yet fully recovered from his recent injury.
As for Ludogorets, the Bulgarian champions left a very good image of themselves when they visited Anfield Road to face Liverpool two weeks ago. Georgi Dermendzhiev’s boys lost by 2-1 but almost managed to grant a valuable draw when former Celta de Vigo winger, Dani Abalo, leveled the score on injury time. Their moment of joy, however, only lasted about two minutes since their goalkeeper Milan Borjan “offered” Liverpool the opportunity to score from the penalty spot after a foolish mistake on the 93rd minute.
Ludogorets have an interesting set of players but in theory they are miles away from constituting a real threat to the all-powerful Real Madrid, who are clear favourites to win the match. Nevertheless, everything can happen in football, and the “Bulgarian David” might be able to stand a chance to overcome the “Spanish Goliath”.
Stats: W-3 L-2 D-0
Recent Form - LWWLW
Stats: W-4 L-1 D-0
Recent Form - WWWWL
Ludogorets (4-2-3-1) - Stoyanov - Caiçara - Moti - Aleksandrov - Minev - Dyakov - Abel - M. Aleksandrov - Marcelinho - Abalo - Younes
Real Madrid (4-4-2) - Casillas - Carvajal - Varane - Sergio Ramos - Coentrão - Modric - Kroos - James Rodríguez - Ronaldo - Bale - Benzema