Previous
Apoel Nicosia
Real Madrid
7:45 PM UTC
Game Details
Borussia Dortmund
Tottenham Hotspur
ESPN3 7:45 PM UTC
Game Details
Manchester City
Feyenoord Rotterdam
ESPN3 7:45 PM UTC
Game Details
Napoli
Shakhtar Donetsk
ESPN3 7:45 PM UTC
Game Details
Sevilla FC
Liverpool
ESPN3 7:45 PM UTC
Game Details
Spartak Moscow
NK Maribor
ESPN3 5:00 PM UTC
Game Details
AS Monaco
RB Leipzig
ESPN3 7:45 PM UTC
Game Details
Aston Villa
Sunderland
7:45 PM UTC
Game Details
Columbus Crew SC
Toronto FC
ESPN3 1:00 AM UTC Nov 22, 2017
Leg 1
Game Details
Houston Dynamo
Seattle Sounders FC
3:00 AM UTC Nov 22, 2017
Leg 1
Game Details
Next

Arsenal aim to winless run vs. Spurs

Five Aside
Read

Italian soccer is on the brink of disaster

Italy
Read

Audi Player Index: Giovinco's set-piece prowess

Major League Soccer
Read

Chelsea, Roma battle for UCL Group C

Five Aside
Read

Higuain eyes 100th Serie A goal

Five Aside
Read

Tottenham aim for consecutive wins vs. Utd

Five Aside
Read

America eye playoffs in Clasico Nacional

Five Aside
Read

Madrid aim to keep UCL run alive vs. Spurs

Five Aside
Read

Argentina's World Cup woes

Five Aside
Read

U.S. faces crucial test vs. Panama

Five Aside
Read

Argentina, Peru eye World Cup qualification

Five Aside
Read

Morrow's historic hat trick tops Audi Index

Five Aside
Read

Cristiano Ronaldo returns as Real Madrid pursue another UCL title

Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo will return to Real Madrid after receiving a four-game ban following the first leg of the Spanish Super Cup.

Real Madrid will begin their attempt to become the first club in more than four decades to win three consecutive Champions League trophies when they host Apoel Nicosia at the Santiago Bernabeu on Wednesday.

No team has won Europe's top club competition in three consecutive years since Bayern Munich lifted the trophy, then known as the European Cup, in 1974, 1975 and 1976. Madrid became the first repeat winner in the Champions League era, which began in 1992-93, when they defeated Juventus in the final in June.

This will be Madrid's 21st consecutive appearance in the Champions League -- the longest run of any club -- and their 22nd overall. Madrid have won the competition 12 times, including six titles since it was renamed in 1992, and have never failed to advance from the group stage.

The champions of La Liga last season, Madrid enter with an 87 percent chance of reaching the round of 16, according to ESPN's Soccer Power Index (SPI), and a 14 percent chance of winning the competition -- behind only Barcelona and Bayern Munich.

Real Madrid have a 93 percent chance of winning, according to the Soccer Power Index (SPI).

Madrid enter Wednesday unbeaten in the last 22 group stage games they have played at the Bernabeu. They followed their last defeat, 3-2 to AC Milan on Oct. 21, 2009, with 20 victories and two draws -- both 2-2 against Borussia Dortmund, first on Nov. 6, 2012 and then on Sept. 27, 2016.

Should Madrid fail to defeat Apoel Nicosia, it would mark the first time they have not won three consecutive home games in all competitions since April 2011. Madrid have drawn their last two La Liga games, first against Valencia and then against Levante.

One player who should make a difference is Cristiano Ronaldo, who will be eligible to play for the first time since receiving a four-match ban for pushing a referee in the first leg of the Spanish Super Cup against Barcelona last month.

Cristiano Ronaldo entered the start of the group stage with the most Champions League goals.

Ronaldo -- whose ban only applies domestically, not to the Champions League, and has one game remaining -- has scored a record 105 goals in the competition in 140 games. His brace against Juventus in the final in June meant that he has been the top scorer in the Champions League each of the last five years.

Apoel Nicosia, who won Cyprus' first division for the fifth consecutive year last season, are making their first appearance in the group stage since 2014 and their fourth overall. Surprise quarterfinalists in 2011-12, they were knocked out in the final eight that year by Real Madrid on 8-2 aggregate.

Follow ESPN Stats & Information on Twitter @ESPNStatsInfo

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.