Basel Salah
Basel are in pole position to seal a passage to the last 16 of the Champions League. Reuters
Basel are in pole position to seal a passage to the last 16 of the Champions League. Reuters
Basel are in pole position to seal a passage to the last 16 of the Champions League. Reuters

FC Basel have so far reserved their best performances in the Champions League for Chelsea. However, come Wednesday, the Swiss side will need to impress once again against a side in blue, but one from Germany, not London.

Basel travel to take on Schalke in a winner-or-draw-take-all Group E encounter of the Champions League in Germany.

The Swiss side, who completed a double against Chelsea in the last matchday, are currently second behind the Blues, and a draw will take them to the last 16 at the expense of Schalke, who are a  point adrift of their opponents.

That scenario means, nothing but a victory will do for Schalke, with Jen Keller urging the importance of his side not to take a completely gung-ho approach against a team that can be deadly on the counter-attacks.

"Tactics will be very important. There are 90 minutes to go, 90 minutes to score -- it wouldn't be clever to play all-out attack from the beginning," Keller said. "We have made a lot of comebacks this season and now we need another. We need a result and three points.

"We'll run through all Basel's strengths and weaknesses with the squad. We have already demonstrated that we're able to beat them. In Basel we played well [winning 1-0] and we want more of the same tomorrow [Wednesday]. We concentrate on our game rather than focusing too much on how Basel played against other teams."

Basel manager Murat Yakin believes his team hold the upperhand coming into Wednesday, with Schalke needing a win to progress.

"In the first game [the reverse tie] we were the better team and only lost due to the finer details, with a goal following a corner," Yakin said. "We have to improve on that and the situation is different this time. Now we are in the box seat and Schalke have to attack.

"Obviously we won't play for a draw. We have a team who like to play attacking football. Our players want to win matches and have some fun. As a result, we will hopefully reach the next round.

"Everybody knows Schalke's quality. Both on the domestic front and in European football they are always able to do what they need when the time comes, when they're under pressure. But we have also shown this in the past. My team are under constant pressure to win in the Swiss league.

"Matches in the Champions League underline our development. After our victory at Chelsea we had games at home to Schalke and Steaua and recognised that they were geared to stopping us. But in front of their own fans I cannot imagine that Schalke will hide and play defensively."

Team news: Schalke: Jermaine Jones is suspended, while Dennis Aogo, Klaas-Jan Huntelaar and Marco Hoger are long-term absentees.

Basel: Marcelo Diaz and Behrang Safari are the ones missing for the Swiss side.

Where to Watch Live

The game is scheduled for a 1.15 am IST start on Thursday morning with no live coverage in India. You can catch the match via live streaming by clicking HERE. Viewers in the U.S. can do the same by clicking HERE. To catch the action courtesy live streaming in the U.K., click HERE. Middle East and North Africa viewers click HERE.

Expected lineups: Schalke: Fahrmann, Uchida, Howedes, Santana, Kolasinac, Matip, Neustadter, Farfan, Meyer, Draxler, Boateng.

Basel: Sommer, Voser, Schar, Ivanov, Xhaka, Serey Die, Salah, Elneny, Frei, Stocker, Streller.

Prediction: 2-1 to Schalke

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