Mauricio Pellegrino exhorted his Valencia CF players to raise their game as they look to make amends for a 2-1 loss at FC Bayern München on matchday one and move to the top of UEFA Champions League Group F. Jupp Heynckes, meanwhile, knows that – with FC BATE Borisov breathing down their necks – defeat at Mestalla could be costly.
Mauricio Pellegrino, coach
The team are in good spirits, and hopefully the fans will be after the game. It will be a top-class match which will make big demands of us, so we hope to do well enough to get the victory. We are getting better every day although I am aware that there are things we still need to improve. We are on the right track and we must continue working to achieve our goals. We are a competitive team, and when we have to make changes, we will and hopefully this game will be no exception to that.
Bayern work very well with or without the ball. We shouldn't make the same mistakes that we made in Munich. We must play a complete game to make it hard for Bayern. I would not settle for a draw when we have the chance to finish top of the group. We have nothing to fear. We must defend and attack well, and play to our strengths.
Saturday: Valencia 2-1 RCD Espanyol (Viera 16, Soldado 89pen; Longo 31)
Alves; Barragán, Rami, Víctor Ruíz, Guardado; Albelda (Banega 67), Costa, Feghouli, Viera (Bernat 68), Jonas (Valdez 80); Soldado
• Roberto Soldado's last-minute penalty was the striker's ninth goal for Valencia in all competitions this season and gave his side a seventh straight victory at Mestalla against an Espanyol team that finished with nine men.
Fernando Gago (left calf strain), João Pereira (right calf tear), Jérémy Mathieu (chronic Achilles problems) and Pablo Piatti remain on the sidelines. However, Aly Cissokho, suspended from Liga action on Saturday, returns along with Ricardo Costa, a late withdrawal from Valencia's squad for their weekend fixture owing to a virus.
Jupp Heynckes, coach
A win or a draw might put us through, but the important thing is to qualify as group winners.
Roberto Soldado is a great player who I know very well. He is a great goalscorer but Valencia have other great offensive players like Jonas and Nelson Valdez. We are very strong defensively, but we have to be very careful.
We are very happy with [Spanish defensive midfielder] Javi Martínez. We have to forget how much he cost and continue the integration process so he can play at the highest European level. His team-mates speak very highly of him, and the captain has acknowledged that it is the type of player that the team needed.
There are several things that differ about the German and Spanish leagues. The stadiums here are newer and friendly; the economic situation and the standard of the Bundesliga has improved a lot, and you can see that in the German clubs' UEFA Champions League and the UEFA Europa League performances. The atmosphere in German stadiums is great and they are almost always full.
Saturday: 1. FC Nürnberg 1-1 Bayern (Feulner 46; Mandžukić 3)
Neuer; Rafinha (Lahm 62), Van Buyten, Dante, Alaba; Schweinsteiger, Tymoshchuk (Martínez 53); Müller, Kroos, Shaqiri; Mandžukić (Pizarro 77)
• For the first time in the Bundesliga this season Bayern did not win away from home. They won the first five away games scoring 15 goals without conceding.
• Rafinha, Daniel Van Buyten and Anatoliy Tymoshchuk made the starting XI for the first time in the league this term while Philipp Lahm started on the bench, meaning that Bastian Schweinsteiger wore the captain's armband until Lahm came on. For Lahm, it was the first time since 16 April 2008 (in a 3-1 win at Eintracht Frankfurt) that he was a substitute in a competitive game for Bayern.
• Franck Ribéry was absent because of a bruised rib. Holger Badstuber was in the squad for the first time since picking up a muscle problem three weeks earlier but did not feature.
Heynckes was "very happy" to have Mario Gomez back in his squad, with the striker having played in a friendly game as he recovers following an ankle operation. Luiz Gustavo has had surgery to resolve a groin problem, while Ribéry should play if he gets through a training session.
• Bayern's record away to Liga teams is W5 D4 L10. Last season they won 2-0 at Villarreal CF in the group stage, their first victory in Spain since 2001, with Toni Kroos and Rafinha on the scoresheet.
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