Wolfsburg v Real Madrid: reaction and analysis

18 Mar

  • First leg: Wolfsburg v Real Madrid, Wednesday 6 April
  • Second leg: Real Madrid v Wolfsburg, Tuesday 12 April

Facts about the tie


Zidane’s 2002 final volley against Leverkusen

  • Wolfsburg and Real Madrid have never previously met.
  • This is Wolfsburg’s first UEFA Champions League knockout appearance; they are the sixth German side to reach the quarter-finals.
  • Wolfsburg’s Julian Draxler was in the Schalke team beaten by Madrid in the 2013/14 round of 16, the Germans losing 6-1 in Gelsenkirchen and 3-1 in Madrid. Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema all scored twice in the first leg, Ronaldo adding two more at the Santiago Bernabéu.
  • Madrid’s Toni Kroos equalised at the VfL Wolfsburg Arena for Bayer Leverkusen, where he was on loan from Bayern München, on 18 April 2009. Wolfsburg went on to win 2-1. 
  • Wolfsburg have won only one of their four previous games against Spanish opponents – the most recent, when they beat Villarreal 4-1 at home in the 2009/10 round of 32 second leg for a 6-3 aggregate success. They lost home (2-3) and away (1-2) to Atlético Madrid in the 1999/2000 UEFA Cup third round.
  • Madrid lost their most recent fixture against German opposition, 4-3 at home to Schalke in last season’s round of 16 second leg, yet still prevailed in that tie having triumphed 2-0 away.
  • That defeat on 10 March 2015 ended a five-match winning streak against Bundesliga sides. Madrid have won on their last three trips to Germany – but their record there still reads P28 W4 D6 L18.

Highlights: Wolfsburg 3-2 Manchester United

Expert comment
Real Madrid will have breathed a sigh of relief after avoiding Barcelona and Bayern, yet Wolfsburg provide an intriguing test for Zinédine Zidane’s men. The first-time quarter-finalists will be keen to secure another big European scalp after topping their group, eliminating Manchester United in the process. With Bale returning to fitness and Ronaldo showing no signs of slowing down, the Merengues will fancy their chances of making the semis for the sixth campaign in a row. Joe Walker 

Reaction
André Schürrle, Wolfsburg midfielder

We had been hoping for an opponent of this calibre and now we’ve got one! It’s a really attractive draw and we can look forward to two great games against Real.

Dieter Hecking, Wolfsburg coach
I said a few days ago that Benfica would have been the easiest draw, but my second wish was Real Madrid. The anticipation is huge and will grow even more. We have the opportunity to showcase ourselves on the biggest stage and want to grasp that chance with everything we’ve got. In the coming days I will think about whether we want to approach the game attack-mindedly or more defensively.

Christian Träsch, Wolfsburg defender
It’s a massively attractive draw. Real are one of the best teams in the world and we will be encountering a true legend in Wolfsburg. Although Real are favourites, we won’t lie down for them – we want to present ourselves as well as we possibly can. In football, anything is possible.

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