Schalke 2.10 v Lokomotiv 4.00; The Draw 3.40 Tuesday 11 December, 17:55 Live on BT Sport 1
Lokomotiv match could provide confidence booster for Schalke
Schalke have already booked their place in the last-16 of the Champions League, but are unable to top Group D, with the leaders Porto boasting a five point advantage.
Yet if there seems little for Schalke to play for, the match does at least represent a good opportunity to bring an end to a poor run of results. Schalke are without a win in three games (D1 L2) and their defeat at home to Borussia Dortmund left them only three points from safety in the Bundesliga.
The two defeats to Dortmund and earlier Porto, came against top-class opposition. There is no need then for panic at Schalke, but after a poor start to the season, it would be easy for them to slip back into trouble and lose confidence.
A win over Lokomotiv then, could have some hidden value. For the Russians, their victory over Galatasaray after four previous defeats in the group, gives them a chance of making the Europa League. They won 2-1 at home to Orenburg at the weekend, which was their third victory in the last four games.
Goals will flow
The result of the match is difficult to predict, given the uncertainty over how seriously Schalke will take this game. Goals seem easier to forecast, with Lokomotiv needing a positive result and having found the net in each of their last three Champions League matches, including the difficult away trip to Porto.
Schalke have not kept a clean sheet in six matches and both teams to score looks a generous price at 1.83.