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31.10.2022Champions League

Club Brugge home game 'good time to turn things round'

The Werkself entertain Club Brugge on Tuesday 1 November (kick-off: 18.45 CET) – and a good result is needed for the chance to play in Europe in the New Year. In the sixth and final group match in the UEFA Champions League, head coach Xabi Alonso is looking to take his team above Atlético Madrid into third place and also secure "a victory for our morale" as midfielder Nadiem Amiri declared.

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"We want to stay in Europe and give our fans another international home game," said head coach Xabi Alonso at the start of the press conference on Monday afternoon. "Being in the Europa League is very important for the team, the fans and the whole club. We will fight and give our all."

The following permutations are possible for the Werkself to finish third in Champions League Group B: If Bayer 04 win then a defeat or a draw for Atlético Madrid in Porto would be enough to finish third and thereby qualify for the knockout rounds of the Europa League. If the Alonso team only pick up one point against Club Brugge then the Madrid team would have to lose at Porto for Bayer 04 to remain in Europe.

Xabi Alonso does not want to think about that during the game. The Spaniard: "I won't follow the other game. We have to look to ourselves and we want to win to have as big a chance of possible of being in Europe in the New Year."

Aránguiz out– Demirbay may play

In addition to Florian Wirtz and Sardar Azmoun, head coach Xabi Alonso will also have to manage without the injured Karim Bellarabi and Charles Aránguiz. Daley Sinkgraven is not registered for the Champions League and Piero Hincapie is serving a one-match ban. A decision will be made after the afternoon training session regarding a place in the squad for Kerem Demirbay who did not play in the last two matches.

Amiri: "important for the morale of the team"

Xabi Alonso was joined at the press conference on Monday afternoon by Nadiem Amiri who also fielded questions from the media. There was "obvious disappointment" at going out of the Champions League but the team will give everything to get a win against Club Brugge. "The match is a good time to turn things round," said the Werkself number 11.

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In the intense Champions League match at Atlético Madrid (2-2) there was a lack of energy in the 2-0 defeat in Leipzig but the Werkself are ready for Club Brugge who have already qualified to the Round of 16 in the Champions League. Amiri stressed how important good recovery and lots of sleep is ahead of the game: "We are full of energy and we'll give our all."

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