Malaga target Champions League quarter-finals with win over Porto

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 13 March, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 13 March, 2013, 5:42am


Malaga's former Portugal international Duda is confident his side can overcome a 1-0 deficit at home to Porto tonight to claim a place in the Champions League quarter-finals.

The Oporto-born midfielder insists his side will be ready for what he describes as the biggest game in Malaga's history as they seek to extend their dream run in what is their maiden campaign in the Champions League.

"The boss [Manuel Pellegrini] has everybody available and we will give everything to make sure we get to the quarters," Duda said. "We … are at home in front of our fans and we have to take advantage of this.

"It will be difficult against a very good side but we have to concentrate on our job. They have great players and a good squad. Even if they have a few key players out, it will still be hard, but it would help us."

It will be difficult against a very good side but we have to concentrate on our job. They have great players and a good squad

Malaga will hope to extend their unbeaten home record in the Champions League by repeating the victories over AC Milan and Zenit St Petersburg in the group stage to reach the last eight.

Porto should be at full strength, with coach Vitor Pereira announcing that he would travel with a group of 19 players to the Costa del Sol. But there are slight doubts about the fitness of French centre-half Eliaquim Mangala and midfielder Joao Moutinho, who has been receiving treatment for a muscle injury.

The Portugal international's 56th-minute strike in the first leg divides the sides and he would be a big miss for the winners of the 2004 Champions League trophy.

"We all have the ambition to win the Champions League," Moutinho said. "Anyone who is at this stage [of the competition] has a desire to go as far as possible, but we're not thinking further than the game against Malaga. That would be a mistake, because they're extremely difficult to beat and will be doing everything they can to go through.

"Our ambition grows every day, and this season we want more. We want to become [domestic] champions again and we want to go as far as possible in the Champions League," he said.

Mangala, who is said to be interesting a host of Premier League clubs, should also be ready after a shoulder injury kept him out of the side since the first leg. Both players were left out of last Friday's 2-0 win at home to Estoril that leaves Porto in second position in the Portuguese league, two points behind leaders Benfica.