Sevilla and Real Madrid prepare for decisive Champions League ties

Source: Xinhua| 2017-11-20 19:45:26|Editor: Jiaxin
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MADRID, Nov. 20 (Xinhua) -- Sevilla and Real Madrid are in Champions League action on Tuesday night with vital games in the penultimate round of group matches.

Sevilla are at home to Liverpool in the Sanchez Pizquan Stadium and there should be a tremendous atmosphere knowing that a win for either side would assure their place in the knockout stage of the tournament, while defeat would leave them waiting nervously until the last match of the group stage.

Liverpool lead the group with 8 points, while Sevilla are second a point behind and both have to be wary of Spartak Moscow, who have five points and are at home to group minnows Maribor at the same time.

Sevilla's main problems are in defense where central defenders Daniel Carricio and Nicolas Pareja are both injured, while Sebastian Corchia hurt a knee during Saturday's win at home to Celta Vigo.

The main doubt is whether Sevilla coach Eduardo Berrizo will continue with record signing Luis Muriel in attack after the Colombian's goal at the weekend, or play Wissam Ben Yedder, who looks to have fallen from favor of late.

Real Madrid meanwhile will travel to play APOEL Nicosia without central defender Sergio Ramos, who broke his nose during Saturday's Madrid derby.

Although it seems likely that Ramos will forgo surgery after being kicked by Lucas Hernandez and play with a protective mask, he won't be available so soon after suffering his injury and Nacho Fernandez will partner Rafael Varene in the Real Madrid defense.

Madrid need to win in order to maintain their chances of finishing top of their group after losing to Tottenham in their last group match and they will also see the trip to Cyprus as the chance to score goals after both Karim Benzema and Cristiano Ronaldo have struggled for form in recent games.

Meanwhile Mateo Kovacic could be available after two months out injured, although Gareth Bale remains sidelined with a muscle problem.