Preview: Real Madrid vs Tottenham

On 17 August, while Real Madrid negotiated the signing of Özil, Tottenham played in Bern its first qualifying match for the Champions League. Its rival, the Young Boys. Its future, dark: 3-0 at the break. Two goals by England team eased the situation. In the second leg, 4-0 in London and noted the particular feature of the team: half naive, half heroic.

At San Siro in the group stage against Inter, it happened again: 4-0 at the break. And the final 4-3 with hat-trick of Bale with his two last goals beyond 90 minutes. The English League has not been an exception. During its visit to Arsenal, Tottenham lost 2-0 after the first half, ended up winning 2-3, its first win in 17 years in the field of eternal rival.

What to think about this team? The thought is that there will not be amount of goals that will address the second part in peace. So no one would celebrate a scoreboard until the lights are turned off because Tottenham flourishes in the second parts. Thus Milan was defeated: Crouch's goal on 80 minutes.

For Real Madrid, there’s no greater motivation than qualifying for their first Champions League semifinal berth in eight years. The team knows it as do the fans: "We yearn for a Bernabeu that drives us to victory; don’t miss it", commented Arbeloa, who is more than familiar with the atmosphere that awaits. With tickets practically sold out and so much on the line, Madridistas are sure to turn out in full force in support of their team.

Real Madrid will need the support of the fans against Tottenham
Real Madrid

Regarding today's game, the first battle is fought in sick. Bale and Gallas will pass a final test today and there is no doubt that they will approve. Like Cristiano and Marcelo, enrolled by decree. None is in good condition but it is expected all will play the game, like there's no second leg neither world beyond tomorrow.

Cristiano Ronaldo, Marcelo and Kaka all worked overtime to be fit by Tuesday. Their speedy recoveries speak words of their desire to get in on the action. Only Gago, Benzema and Pedro Leon remain unavailable due to injury, while Albiol and Canales were left off the squad list based on a coaching decision.

Spurs have lost on all five previous occasions against Mourinho, but against Milan they proved they are more than capable of winning on the road. Despite not winning as visitors in the group stage, they did score a total of eight goals and along with Real Madrid Spurs currently lead the Champions League with 19 goals scored to date. With players likes Modric, Van der Vaart, Lennon, Bale, Defoe, Pavlyuchenko and Crouch, the Whites will have their hands full come Tuesday. 

Tottenham at Santiago Bernabeu Stadium
Lennon, Bale and Van der Vaart

Combining Spurs’ offensive fire power with the added value of scoring as visitors, keeping a clean sheet will be crucial to Real Madrid’s chances. Mourinho’s men are well versed at not conceding goals in Champions League play and they hope to maintain their form against Tottenham. The players yearn for a "Bernabeu that drives them to victory" and the fans can almost smell the semifinals in the distance. Stick the two together under the same roof and they can make it happen.


1. Now or never: Madrid will come out with everything except Benzema. Adebayor will be the '9'. Cristiano and Marcelo will play, prepared to risk for the "Tenth".

2. Playing with the brake: Cristiano, Pepe, Carvalho, Di Maria and Ramos are warned and if they receive a yellow card, will lost the second leg. Have to play with caution.

3. Tottenham: One of the best weapons of the 'spurs' are in the sides where Lennon and Bale will not let rivals breathe at high speed. More than ever, Real Madrid must protect the back.

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