German club Schalke 04 will do battle with Turkish team Galatasaray again on Tuesday March 12 when the two resume their round-of-16 Champions League tie in Germany. The first leg ended 1-1 in Istanbul, Turkey a couple of weeks ago. This match will take place at the Veltins Arena and the Turkish side will have to score at least one goal to stay alive.
A 0-0 draw will be no good for them as they’ll be knocked out on the away goals rule. A 1-1 draw would see the match go into 30 minutes of extra time and then possibly a penalty shootout. A 2-2 draw or higher would see Galatasaray advance to the quarterfinals round and if either of the teams win the game they will go through to the next stage.
Sportsbook Bet365 has the latest odds of a Galatasaray win at 4/1 with a Schalke victory at 4/6 and a draw at 14/5.
The Bundesliga side has been on a bit of a roll since the game in Turkey and has won three games in a row in the league. Things aren’t all rosy for the side though since it looks like manager Jens Keller will have to do without one of his best players for the second leg. Unfortunately for Schalke supporters the player they’ll have t do without will be Dutch international striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, who is among the best goal scorers in the world. The Dutchman had to be carried off of the pitch over the weekend in Schalke’s 2-1 victory against Borussia Dortmund due to what seems to be a pretty serious knee injury.
Reports say that Huntelaar may miss several weeks of action now because of the injury. In addition, the team is expecting both Kyriakos Papadopoulos and Ibrahim Afellay to miss the game because of injuries. To make matters worse, Jermaine Jones, who scored the team’s away goal in Turkey, won’t be able to play because he’s suspended after picking up too many yellow cards. We may see Keller use Teemu Pukki, a striker form Finland, to play for Huntelaar and Marco Hoger could get the nod to play for Jones.
Galatasaray will go into the game after losing 1-0 on the weekend to Gençlerbirligi. However, they’re still sitting at the top of the Turkish Super Lig as they’re four points ahead of their arch rival Fenerbache. Midfielder Felipe Melo missed the home leg of this tie because of a suspension, but he’s back for the rematch. Expect former Chelsea star Didier Drogba to get the nod up front for the Turkish side.
Galatasaray needs a goal in this match, there’s no two ways about it, and so we could see them go with a more attack-minded lineup. This means Sabri Sarioglu could start and Yekta Kurtulus could be on the bench when the game kicks off.
The injuries could be a real blow to Schalke and they’re not sure if they should try to hang on to a 0-0 score line or go for a goal themselves. Even if they do go ahead 1-0, Galatasaray just needs to score once to force extra time. Look for Galatasaray to play well here and surprise Schalke with a draw or win.