Madrid, March 16: Atletico Madrid need to recapture their best form if they are to overturn a 0-1 first leg defeat to Bayer Leverkusen and qualify for the quarter-fils of the Champions League on Tuesday night. Atletico's defeat in Germany three weeks ago was symptomatic of the Spanish team's poor recent form where they have especially struggled away from home. That trend continued on Saturday when they were held to a 0-0 draw away to Espanyol in a result which saw them slip to fourth place in La Liga. Now comes the moment of truth as last season's beaten Champions League filists have to overturn a first leg defeat against a rival which shows itself to be every bit as rugged and as competitive as Atletico can be. They will have to do so without the suspended Tiago Cardoso, who was sent off in Germany, while central defender Diego Godin also misses out for accumulation of yellow cards, meaning that Gimenez will step into the heart of the Atletico defence.
Meanwhile, Atletico defender Jesus Gamez highlights that Leverkusen will probably start the game scoring an away goal, something that would be a major factor because if the Germans could score in Vicente Calderon it would leave Atletico needing to score three times in order to qualify. IANS