Jurgen Klopp admits that Borussia Dortmund could lose by a heavy margin against Real Madrid tonight.
Last season Borussia Dortmund and Real Madrid locked horns with each other four times in the Champions League and the German giants lost just once.
This campaign they will confront each other twice and Dortmund could be at the end of a battering.
That’s according to their coach Jurgen Klopp, who admits that his team could suffer in the first leg of the quarter-final tie at the Santiago Bernabeu given their injury and suspension problems.
"I'm not a magician but we have had to get over much adversity this season," the 46-year-old told reporters. "I have very good players and my duty is to make them better; so far we've done that very well.
“Our players that don't feature in every game are going to grow up in this match. Real Madrid are more flexible now. The speed of their game is amazing. Barcelona, Madrid and Bayern are the best. We have to keep on evolving. Last year we were a barrier for Madrid and we are going to try to do that again.
"Playing the second leg at home may be a slight advantage but I fear Madrid trying to settle the tie here. I have seen many of their games and they never finish a match without one scoring opportunity. They have incredible quality and we can't ignore that. If we play our game and keep our heads up, we will have chances."
Does Klopp have a reason to worry? Most certainly. Robert Lewandowski, who will leave for Bayern Munich at the end of the season, is suspended for the fixture in Madrid, while Ilkay Gundogan, Neven Subotic, Jakub Blaszczykowski, Sven Bender and Marcel Schmelzer all are sidelined.
Meanwhile, Madrid seem to have recovered from successive defeats to Barcelona and Sevilla as they hammered poor Rayo Vallecano 5-0 at the Bernabeu. Los Blancos will have a point or two to prove against Dortmund especially after being jeered during the weekend’s match.
However, Klopp will have hatched a plan to take Madrid to the test. Last season he outwitted Jose Mourinho over the two legs in the semi-finals, winning the tie 4-3 on aggregate, and this time he will have put the wheels into motion already.
Last season Klopp also played down his side’s chances of getting past the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Luka Modric and Angel di Maria and this term he has tagged his team as underdogs. Yet, if Dortmund can hold their own in Madrid and get an away goal without conceding more than two, then they might fancy their chances of putting one over Madrid. Yet again.