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Ludogorets vs Real Madrid: Match preview

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Champions Real Madrid travel to Ludogorets in a real David and Goliath Champions League battle.

The Bulgarians have added a real touch of romance to the competition recently, progressing through on penalties in incredible fashion.

With a minute of extra time left, Ludogorets keeper Vladislav Stoyanov was sent off and without a substitute left to bring on, defender Cosmin Moti was forced to stand in.

Two penalty saves from five saw his side through at the expense of Steaua Bucharest, and the script writers couldn't have wrote a better narrative than to place them in the group with the reigning champions.

Spot on you might say!

Let's take a look at some key issues to will shape this this one...

Bulgarian jinx

Let's be honest, no one is giving the home side a chance in this or any other game.

For Ludogorets to even get a point, supposedly the Bulgarian champions for three consecutive seasons will have to play at the very top of their game whilst their more celebrated opponents will need to have a real off day.

However, three former champions of the competition have travelled to the country during the following season and all three - Ajax, Nottingham Forest and Liverpool - have all left with their tails between their legs, per Stoyan Georgiev of UEFA.com.

Stranger things have happened, and with a sell out 42,000 crowd cheering them on, who knows...

Liverpool needed a last-minute penalty to take the points in the last group game, so Real best not get too complacent.

Record-breaking Ronaldo

In saying that, Ludogorets will have to stop Cristiano Ronaldo and in the kind of form he finds himself in at the moment that's a big ask.

10 goals in the first six La Liga games of the season has never been achieved before by a Real Madrid player, so he is already setting records before the season is even in full swing.

With 17 scored in this competition last season, leaving him just a few behind the record set by fellow Madridsta Raul, you can bet your bottom dollar that the Portuguese will be going all out to get himself in the history books in this one.

Goals, goals, goals

This is one game where goals should be guaranteed, both sides with almost identical records in their respective leagues.

Both have scored twenty goals apiece and Ludogorets 10 conceded is only one more than their visitors.

The Bulgarians have scored in every single game they've played this season in all competitions and will be hoping to continue their run against Europe's best.

Real have scored 15 in their last three games alone and will take some stopping.

Finishing in top spot

With a +4 goal difference already, Real will be looking for a big win to cement their place at the top of Group B.

Liverpool are the next to travel to Madrid, and three points at home to the Reds after taking the same from the Bulgarians, would all but seal Los Blancos spot as group winners.

All to play for.

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Topics:
UEFA Champions League
Real Madrid
La Liga
Football

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