Borussia Dortmund coach Thomas Tuchel believes his side are slight underdogs for their Champions League quarter-final with Monaco.
The Germans welcome the Ligue 1 leaders to the Westfalenstadion on Tuesday evening before travelling to the principality for the return leg next Wednesday.
Dortmund sit fourth in the Bundesliga table after suffering a 4-1 defeat at rivals Bayern Munich on Saturday and Tuchel feels Monaco’s superior domestic form may give them a small advantage.
Monaco have lots of players who impress us,’ he told uefa.com.
‘We think they have outstanding individual talent, but they are also very compact as a team and athletically very strong.
‘It’s a very complete package with an outstanding coach who has a distinctive style. They have big personalities and a lot of good young players.
‘It is a 50-50 game, but the momentum (is) slightly on their side. But we feel ready for this great match, to show what we can do and to win it.’
Dortmund have endured injuries to key players in recent weeks, but they could welcome back a number of first-team regulars against Monaco.
Julian Weigl and Shinji Kagawa are expected to be available, along with right-back Lukasz Piszczek, while creative midfielder Marco Reus may also be fit.
Dortmund defender Raphael Guerreiro has warned not to expect too much from the returning players and believes the club’s supporters could play a big role in securing a positive first-leg result.
‘In our stadium we have a really incredible atmosphere,’ he said.
‘The fans will put a lot of pressure (on the visitors) and that will really help us. It is true that we have had some problems away from home, but we have had very good results at home. But we are still very stable.
‘Some players have returned from injury and it will take a while for them to get back to their usual level.’
Monaco midfielder Fabinho is keen to emulate the side which reached the final of the competition in 2004, but admits elimination would ‘not be a disaster’.
Leonardo Jardim’s side are currently three points above champions Paris St Germain in Ligue 1 and Fabinho believes winning the domestic championship is more important than progressing in the Champions League.
Monaco have not been further than the quarter-finals of Europe’s premier competition since they lost 3-0 in the final to Jose Mourinho’s Porto 13 years ago.
‘In 2004, it was an unprecedented event for Monaco,’