Real, Liverpool look to confirm last-16 spots | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, December 01, 2020 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:17 AM, December 01, 2020

Real, Liverpool look to confirm last-16 spots

Real Madrid will be aiming to book their spot in the last-16 stage of the Champions League when they take on Shakhtar Donetsk tonight.

Zinedine Zidane's side are currently second in Group B, three points clear of third-placed Shakhtar, meaning that a victory would see them advance to the knockout round of the competition.

Madrid, meanwhile, will enter Tuesday's match off the back of a shock home defeat by Alaves in La Liga.  Zidane's side only picked up one point from their first two group games against Shakhtar and Gladbach but then managed to record back-to-back victories over Inter, including an impressive 2-0 success at San Siro.

As mentioned, a win on Tuesday would see Madrid advance to the last-16 stage of the Champions League and then potentially battle Gladbach for first position on December 9.

Los Blancos have actually lost in the round of 16 in the last two seasons and will be desperate to advance deep into the competition this term but inconsistency has been a real problem in 2020-21.

Meanwhile, Liverpool are hungry to bounce back while Atlético Madrid and Real Madrid can both avenge humiliating defeats as Matchday 5 begins.

Liverpool was less than impressed when the Reds suffered their first group stage home defeat since 2014 on Matchday 4, describing the hosts' attack in their 2-0 loss to Atalanta as "alarmingly insipid – tired, weak and bang out of ideas". Jürgen Klopp's side still top Group D, yet the pressure is on as they welcome a revitalised Ajax. Klopp's team will qualify for the last 16 if they avoid defeat against their Dutch visitors.

Bayern Munich''s record-breaking winning streak now stretches to 16 games, but with a round of 16 place and top spot now secure, will that run finally end in Madrid? Atletico lost 4-0 in Munich on Matchday 1, but if that result flattered Hansi Flick's team, Diego Simeone's men have not sparkled so brightly since.

Group C has divided quite sharply between the haves and the have-nots; Manchester City are through with 12 points, but while Porto currently sit pretty with nine, defeat at home to Josep Guardiola's side could yet give Olympiacos a chance to deny them a round of 16 berth on Matchday 6.

Winners of the first edition of the UEFA Champions League, Marseille have left their mark on the tournament's history in less heroic fashion of late, their 2-0 home reversal against Porto making it a record 13 straight group stage defeats. "The club will still be mocked for this run in several years' time," wrote local paper La Provence. Boss André Villas-Boas must now rally his troops as they welcome Olympiacos.

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