Following the heartbreak of a couple of
years ago, fans and players of Bayer Leverkusen will be out for revenge
on Wednesday night when they hook up with Real Madrid in Champions
League Group B action. Also, AS Roma will play host to Dynamo Kiev.
Back in the 2002 Champions League final in Glasgow, Real Madrid got a
goal on the interval from Zinedine Zidane to beat Leverkusen 2-1,
denying the German club their first European trophy since the 1987/88
For coach Klaus Augenthaler, he might not risk defender Jens Nowotny,
who missed the weekend Bundesliga loss at FSV Mainz. Aside from that,
Augenthaler will have a full-strength squad at his disposal with Franзa
and Dimitar Berbatov starting in attack.
As for Madrid, defender Walter Samuel has been declared fit and could
see action on Wednesday at the BayArena. Also, defender Francisco Pavуn,
who had complained of back problems has also been declared fit and will
travel with the team.
In the other match, Roma host Dynamo Kiev at the Olympic Stadium in Rome.
It is historic in the sense that this game will be the first meeting
between the two clubs and the first time Roma has faced an opponent from
In Rudi Vцller’s first European match at the helm of Roma, he will be
without key defender Traianos Dellas and newest signing Mido. Also,
Christian Chivu remains out of action with Christian Panucci also a
doubt after missing training with a groin injury, although Vцller
expects him to play.
New coach Jozsef Szabo will look to get some great results from lead
striker, Latvian international Maris Verpakovskis, who made a good name
for himself this summer at Euro 2004. Szabo’s only main injury problem
is midfield player Valentin Belkevich, who has been declared out for the