Di Matteo hoping for Madrid off-day

Schalke boss Roberto Di Matteo is hoping Real Madrid will have an off-day when the teams meet in the Champions League on Tuesday.

The Bundesliga outfit are bidding to overturn a 2-0 deficit from the first leg in Germany and the Italian, who guided Chelsea to success in the competition in 2012, also feels his own side need to put in a flawless performance.

“To be able to compete against a team like Madrid our team needs to have a perfect day and hope that they are not in top form,” Di Matteo told UEFA.com.

“Then we could get a positive result. We have a good side and the players are all very willing and ready to develop further and improve day in, day out.

“That’s very important, that they push themselves to the limit, so we hope we can achieve a good result.”

The 44-year-old went on to tell what Champions League football means to a club like Schalke.

“The fans are really proud the team regularly takes part in the competition. It’s the club’s goal to qualify for it every season and we have to make it into the top four in the League.

“The spectators enjoy these European nights very much as they are so different to the regular Bundesliga matches.

“That’s when teams like Chelsea and Real Madrid come to Gelsenkirchen,” he added.

Despite facing an uphill task Schalke are expected to have 4,000 fans making the journey to the Spanish capital, while Di Matteo has injury problems ahead of the tie with Julian Draxler, Sead Kolasinac and Jefferson Farfan all ruled out.

Tags Di Matteo Schalke