On paper, Borussia Dortmund should pretty comfortably beat Zenit St. Petersburg and progress into the Champions League quarterfinals. In reality, they may find life a little more difficult. They head into the first leg at the Petrovsky Stadium on the back of a disappointing 3-0 Bundesliga hammering to the not-very-good HSV, as they continue to struggle through an injury crisis.
They'll be without several key first-teamers for this trip to Russia; namely İlkay Gündoğan, Sven Bender, Neven Subotić and Jakub Błaszczykowski, with Mats Hummels in doubt. However, they can at least take some heart from Zenit's lack of match practice -- this will be their first competitive game back after the long Russian winter break.
Zenit too have a few important players missing, but aren't quite as injury-hit as their visitors. Cristian Ansaldi, Roman Shirokov and Danny will all be sidelined, with Alexander Kerzhakov set for a late fitness test. However, they've got January signing Salomón Rondón to throw into their starting 11; the young Venezuelan is set for his first appearance after joining from Rubin Kazan last month.
Zenit St. Petersburg injuries and suspensions
Out: Cristian Ansaldi, Roman Shirokov, Danny. In doubt: Alexander Kerzhakov.
Borussia Dortmund injuries and suspensions
Out: İlkay Gündoğan (back), Sven Bender (groin), Neven Subotić (knee), Jakub Błaszczykowski (knee). In doubt: Mats Hummels (ankle).
Borussia Dortmund: Roman Weidenfeller; Łukasz Piszczek, Sokratis Papastathopoulos, Mats Hummels, Marcel Schmelzer; Sebastian Kehl, Nuri Şahin; Marco Reus, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang; Robert Lewandowski.
Match Date/Time: Tuesday, 9 p.m. local, 12 p.m. ET
Venue: Petrovsky Stadium, St. Petersburg, Russia
TV: Fox Sports 1 (U.S. - English), Fox Deportes (U.S. - Spanish), Sportsnet World (Canada), Sky Sports 1/HD (U.K.), NTV Russia, NTV+ Football (Russia), Sky Sport 1/HD (Germany)
Online: Fox Soccer 2Go (U.S.), Sky Go (U.K. and Germany)