Champions' League Group G
CSKA Moscow vs. Real Madrid
Wednessday, October 3rd 2018
04:00am (GMT+8 Timing)
Stadium: VEB Arena
Last five matches form: W W D D W
Average goals per match: 1.56
Average goals against per match: 0.44
Top Scorer: Fedor Chalov (7)
Last five matches form: D W W L D
Average goals per match: 1.71
Average goals against per match: 0.86
Top Scorer: Karim Benzema (4)
Defending champions Real Madrid take to the field once again in the Champions League this week as they make the journey to the Russian capital to take on CSKA.
Real began the defence of their crown in scintillating style when blowing away a useful Roma side at the Bernabéu and will be strongly fancied to make it two wins from as many matches here.
CSKA also picked up a positive result on the opening night when drawing 2-2 away at Vitoria Plzen. This represents a significant jump up in class though.
This will be the third match between the sides. Real winning the latest 4-1 back in 2012. The only previous encounter between the sides here in Moscow ended in a 1-1 draw.
Real have had something of a blip since dismantling Roma, being hammered away at Sevilla before being held to a goalless draw at home in the Madrid derby.
CSKA have also looked indifferent at times of late. Drawing at home with Spartak and scraping a 1-0 win away at Orenburg.
The home side are badly hit by injuries. Viktor Vasin, Hördur Magnússon, Aleksandr Makarov, Kristijan Bistrovic, Konstantin Kuchaev and Khetag Khosonov all expected to miss out.
Real have problems of their own though with key men Marcelo and Gareth Bale rated as significant doubts.
The absence of Bale tempers enthusiasm a little, but in the likes of Isco and Marco Asensio, Real should still have the keys to unlock the Moscow rear-guard.
Prediction: CSKA Moscow 1 - 2 Real Madrid
Half time: 1 - 0
Full time: 1 - 0
Shots: 4 - 16
Shots on target: 3 - 4
Corner Kicks: 4 - 6
Possession: 25% - 75%
Real Madrid kept on the right side of referee Ovidiu Hategan throughout. CSKA had Jaka Bijol and Ivan Oblaykov booked, and Igor Akinfeev sent off for two bookable offences.
Defeat for Real Madrid in the Russian capital, as despite utterly dominating possession, finishing well ahead in the total shots and edging the shots on target count, they were unable to get on the scoresheet and were ultimately undone by a very early goal from the home side.
That goal came in just the second minute of the game, and it was almost entirely of Real Madrid's own making. Toni Kroos badly misjudging a pass back towards his own goal and playing the ball straight into the path of Nikola Vlasic. Vlasic evading a challenge on the edge of the area to finish past Keylor Navas in the Real Madrid goal.
Casemiro went close for Real in the first half when striking the outside of the post from around 25 yards. Karim Benzema also sending a headed effort against the crossbar.
All Madrid in the second half with Mariano Diaz hitting the woodwork with another header, this time the visitors being denied by the foot of the post.
Backs against the wall stuff from the hosts in the remainder of the game as they seemed content to hold on to what they had. They defended pretty resolutely too with Madrid struggling to pick the defence apart and having to rely on crosses into the area for the bulk of their chances.
A huge win for Moscow who now sit atop Group G after two games and have now given themselves a very real chance at qualifying for the knockout stages of the competition.