Real Madrid v Borussia Dortmund: Smart money on Real Madrid to exploit the wealth gap having spent over £400m more since 2009 than their Champions League opponents

German side face uphill task to replicate last season's 4-3 aggregate win over Spanish giants

It would never have happened on the south stand "Yellow Wall" at Borussia Dortmund's Westfalenstadion. Real Madrid were jeered as they won 5-0 at the weekend against Rayo Vallecano. Their chronically dissatisfied supporters were upset with Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo among others.

What Dortmund fans would not give for a little of that €200m (£166m) of striking talent. Their talisman Robert Lewandowski will be scoring goals for Bayern Munich next season and was looking at houses in Munich today while his team-mates prepared to face Real Madrid, 11 months on from having knocked them out of the European Cup at the semi-final stage last season.

"The jeers are all forgotten now," said Real coach Carlo Ancelotti. Some of them were directed at him. With the league now out of Real's hands, beating Barcelona in the Spanish Cup final and landing the club's 10th European Cup is what is required to save the season.

"We never felt we were at Wembley until the referee blew the final whistle," said Jürgen Klopp, the Dortmund coach, of last year's 4-3 aggregate win over Jose Mourinho's Real. "They might be even better this year," he added. "They have bought Bale and Isco so they have tremendous options going forward. We are the Cinderella of the tie, there is no doubt about that."

Real have spent €608m (£504m) on transfers since 2009; Borussia Dortmund have shelled out just €107m (£89m) in the same period. Last summer Bale, Asier Illarramendi, Isco, Dani Carvajal and Casemiro came in for the combined outlay of €180m (£150m). Dortumnd brought in Milos Jojic, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Sokratis Papastathopoulos for €52m (£43m). Despite spending far less, the German side have actually won more in the last five years than their hosts tomorrow night.

The financial imbalance is enhanced however by the absence of six players who featured last season in Dortmund's win over Real at the semi-final stage. Neven Subotic, Sven Bender, Ilkay Gundogan, Jakub Blaszczykowski and Marcel Schmelzer are all injured and Lewandowski is suspended.

Real will be without left-back Marcelo, whose left hamstring looks set to sideline him for the next two weeks. Ancelotti has ruled out turning the clock back for Bale and lining him up as a replacement, so Fabio Coentrao will come in. That aside, Real will be at full strength.

Ronaldo is two goals short of becoming the first player to score 15 goals in one Champions League season – Ruud van Nistelrooy and Lionel Messi have both scored 14 in previous campaigns – and Bale will be looking to add to the 16 goals in all competitions he has scored in his first season.

"It's true he has been a little in and out but that is not down to his attitude, it's the position he plays," Ancelotti said of Bale. "A player like Xabi Alonso will play the same week in week out but it's different for a forward," added the Italian, defending him against the suggestion he has flattered to deceive in his first campaign – a suggestion that seems completely at odds with the statistics.

Ancelotti also stuck up for Ronaldo, who has scored in his last 14 matches. "Cristiano is always at the maximum level we can expect from him. The jeers at the weekend were because he chose to shoot instead of pass; but they are forgotten now."

The fans inside the Bernabeu have booed all of Real's best players over the years. Alfredo di Stéfano was once jeered for advertising ladies' tights. He was injured in the 1962-63 season and made use of the time to pose for an advert that placed his upper body over some shapely female legs. "We are here with the world's best player and he has an important announcement," said the voice-over. To which Di Stéfano responded: "If I was a woman I would wear Berkshire tights". The Bernabeu jeered him on his return to action.

The metrosexuals that inhabit the Real dressing room get an easier ride than they did 50 years ago but demands on the pitch are as high as ever. "The atmosphere will be special tonight and it's going to help us a lot," said Ancelotti. He knows European nights are different and the discontent will, to start with, be replaced by a cauldron of noise.

Real will need to respond and deliver a convincing first-leg performance because the "Yellow Wall" awaits them next week and "Cinderellas" or not, Dortmund will believe they can topple the competition's second favourites.

"We are no worse than last season," said Klopp. "I have never known an injury crisis like it but we are still second in the league and in the cup final. We finished first in the most difficult Champions League group of the lot and we are in the European Cup quarter-finals for the fourth season running. And above all, as everyone knows by now, we never give up."

Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor and the Dalek meet
tvReview: Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
Arts and Entertainment
books
Sport
Diego Costa
footballEverton 3 Chelsea 6: Diego Costa double has manager purring
Life and Style
3D printed bump keys can access almost any lock
gadgets + techSoftware needs photo of lock and not much more
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Inside the gallery at Frederick Bremer School in Walthamstow
tvSimon Usborne goes behind the scenes to watch the latest series
Life and Style
Silvia says of her famous creation: 'I never stopped wearing it. Because I like to wear things when they are off the radar'
fashionThe fashion house celebrated fifteen years of the punchy pouch with a weighty tome
Arts and Entertainment
Gregg Wallace in Summer's Supermarket Secrets
tv All of this year's 15 contestants have now been named
News
i100Steve Carell selling chicken, Tina Fey selling saving accounts and Steve Colbert selling, um...
Life and Style
A picture taken on January 12, 2011 shows sex shops at the Paris district of Pigalle.
newsThe industry's trade body issued the moratorium on Friday
Arts and Entertainment
Could we see Iain back in the Bake Off tent next week?
tv Contestant teased Newsnight viewers on potential reappearance
News
i100
News
The slice of Prince Charles and Princess Diana's wedding cake and the original box from 29 July 1981
newsPiece of Charles and Diana's wedding cake sold at auction in US
Voices
The Ukip leader has consistently refused to be drawn on where he would mount an attempt to secure a parliamentary seat
voicesNigel Farage: Those who predicted we would lose momentum heading into the 2015 election are going to have to think again
Arts and Entertainment
Cara Delevingne made her acting debut in Anna Karenina in 2012
film Cara Delevingne 'in talks' to star in Zoolander sequel
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Chosen to lead the women's wing of the ruling Zanu-PF, the wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding the 90-year old
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model of a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

As the collections start, fashion editor Alexander Fury finds video and the internet are proving more attractive
Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy

Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall...

... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy
Weekend at the Asylum: Europe's biggest steampunk convention heads to Lincoln

Europe's biggest steampunk convention

Jake Wallis Simons discovers how Victorian ray guns and the martial art of biscuit dunking are precisely what the 21st century needs
Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Lying is dangerous and unnecessary. A new book explains the strategies needed to avoid it. John Rentoul on the art of 'uncommunication'
Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough? Was the beloved thespian the last of the cross-generation stars?

Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough?

The atomisation of culture means that few of those we regard as stars are universally loved any more, says DJ Taylor
She's dark, sarcastic, and bashes life in Nowheresville ... so how did Kacey Musgraves become country music's hottest new star?

Kacey Musgraves: Nashville's hottest new star

The singer has two Grammys for her first album under her belt and her celebrity fans include Willie Nelson, Ryan Adams and Katy Perry
American soldier-poet Brian Turner reveals the enduring turmoil that inspired his memoir

Soldier-poet Brian Turner on his new memoir

James Kidd meets the prize-winning writer, whose new memoir takes him back to the bloody battles he fought in Iraq
Aston Villa vs Hull match preview: Villa were not surprised that Ron Vlaar was a World Cup star

Villa were not surprised that Vlaar was a World Cup star

Andi Weimann reveals just how good his Dutch teammate really is
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef ekes out his holiday in Italy with divine, simple salads

Bill Granger's simple Italian salads

Our chef presents his own version of Italian dishes, taking in the flavours and produce that inspired him while he was in the country
The Last Word: Tumbleweed through deserted stands and suites at Wembley

The Last Word: Tumbleweed through deserted stands and suites at Wembley

If supporters begin to close bank accounts, switch broadband suppliers or shun satellite sales, their voices will be heard. It’s time for revolution