Auxerre v Real Madrid: match preview

Real Madrid travel to France to take on Auxerre today looking to maintain their winning start in Group C. Jose Mourinho’s men got off to a perfect start in the first group game with a 2-0 win oveauxerre v realr Ajax and another three points at Stade de l’Abbe-Deschamps will leave them well-placed for the knockout stages.

Auxerre have endured a difficult start to the season and are still looking for their first win in Ligue 1 after seven games.

The French side were beaten 2-0 by AC Milan in their opening group game and they will be keen to get some points on the board to keep alive their hopes of progressing. Real boss Mourinho could shake up his forward line with the Spanish side yet to find their touch in front of goal.

Brazil ace Kaka remains sidelined as he recovers from knee surgery, while midfield duo Sergio Canales and Fernando Gago are both still injured. Ezequiel Garay and Raul Albiol have yet to feature this season and they will again both miss out against Auxerre.    Pepe is available for Mourinho’s men after he missed the weekend draw with Levante through suspension.

Auxerre are sweating over the fitness of key duo Ireneusz Jelen and Anthony Le Tallec after they missed the weekend draw with Nancy with knee and ankle injuries respectively. Jeremy Berthod could return to the side after recovering from a groin problem, but Alexandre Licata and Jean-Pascal Mignot are both missing through injury. Auxerre are hardly in intimidating form. They lost their opening group match 2-0 at AC Milan and squandered a two-goal lead at home to Nancy in Ligue 1 on Saturday. A 2-2 draw left them down near the foot of the standings after seven matches.

“I am upset, frustrated and a bit worried after what I saw tonight. When you lead 2-0 after 10 minutes you normally assume you’ve done the hardest part,” said coach Jean Fernandez.

“If we play like this on Tuesday it is going to be very, very difficult.” Auxerre should welcome back Poland striker Ireneusz Jelen, who sat out the Nancy game because of knee pains.

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