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Champions League: Real Sociedad v Shakhtar Donetsk Preview

A look at tonight’s Champions League meeting between Real Sociedad and Shakhtar Donetsk.

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Team News
Real Sociedad

  • The fit again Liassine Cadamuro and Alberto De la Bella vie for a place at left-back while Sociedad could welcome back Carlos Martinez from injury on the right.
  • Last season’s top scorer Imanol Agirretxe could also be back after a spell on the sidelines with a thigh problem, meaning Carlos Vela would move to the right on the opposite flank to Antoine Griezmann.
  • Inigo Martinez was fit enough to play at the weekend and will partner Mikel Gonzalez at the back.

Shakhtar Donetsk

  • Summer signing Wellington Nem has had surgery on a knee injury and been left out of the squad but compatriots Bernard, Fernando and Fred could all make their Champions League debuts for Shakhtar.
  • In goal Kanibolotsky has been preferred to the error prone Pyatov at times this season but it remains to be seen who will start on Tuesday.
  • Tomas Hubschmann returned to feature on the bench on Friday but was an unused substitute and may still be short of match fitness.

Prediction

  • Real Sociedad are back in the Champions League after 9 years courtesy of an impressive two-legged victory against tough opposition in Lyon in qualifying, though their fixture list has already disrupted their league form, winning just one of the first 4 La Liga matches.
  • The Ukrainian giants have been out of form lately having failed to win in their last three league games including a defeat to at Karpaty at the weekend and their form away from home in Europe is equally unimpressive, winning just 2 in 8.
  • Neither side are in good form domestically but the home advantage should be key for the Basque side, with the fans likely to be hugely excited about the club’s return to face Europe’s elite.

Prediction: Real Sociedad 1 Shakhtar Donetsk 1

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