Zenit St Petersburg star player Danny is hoping his side can defeat La Liga opponents Malaga in tonight’s vital Champions League Group C fixture.
Zenit sit bottom of the the table with just three points from their opening four games and know that even a victory against Malaga may still not be enough to propel them any further towards the top of the standings.
Danny, the Portugal international, feels that his side should focus solely on their fixture and not spend time worrying what happens in the other match in Group C between Anderlecht and AC Milan in Belgium.
“We talk about stuff like that in the locker room of course, but the important thing for us is to win,” said the Zenit player.
“Clearly, if we win both matches, and Milan beat Anderlecht, we have a chance to advance from our group.
“We’re a good team, and we have strong players, and we’re going to do everything to win.
“Obviously, tomorrow is a deciding match for Zenit. Malaga is strong, but we’ll have our home fans behind us, and we’ll be concentrated only on winning. Again, we’re doing everything to win.”
Luciano Spalletti, the Zenit coach, has confirmed that key man Hulk is available to play, but a late decision will be made on Vladimir Bystrov.
The Russian club will have to cope without defensive pair and Aleksandar Lukovic and Domenico Criscito for the must-win group game.
Malaga’s first choice goalkeeper Carlos Kameni will play no part in the match after being left at home after falling ill just before the club boarded the plane to Russia.
Manager Manuel Pellegrini is forced to field Pol Viejo and will hope he will play a big part in helping his players to come away from the match with at least a draw, which would cement their place in the next round of the competition.
Defenders Monreal and Sergio Sanchez are both desperately fighting to return to action after injury, and former Arsenal striker Julio Baptista is still at least a week away from his return to the squad.
Malaga midfielder Joaquin was left out of the squad to face Zenit, as was forward man Javier Saviola.