Arena Națională - Bucharest 19/08/2014 - 20:45CET (21:45 local time)

Play-offs, First leg

Steaua - Ludogorets
1-0

Steaua - Ludogorets 1-0 - 19/08/2014 - Match page - UEFA Champions League 2015

The official website for European football

Ludogorets' Moți steeled for Steaua showdown

Published: Monday 18 August 2014, 9.00CET
"The games will be spectacular," said PFC Ludogorets Razgrad defender Cosmin Moți – a former FC Dinamo Bucureşti stalwart – as his side gear up to meet FC Steaua Bucureşti.
by Stoyan Georgiev
Ludogorets' Moți steeled for Steaua showdown
Cosmin Moţi is returning home to Romania with Ludogorets ©Getty Images
 

Suspensions and injuries

Tournament statistics

Steaua
Ludogorets

7

Goals scored

7

49

Total attempts

60

21

on target

19

22

off target

23

6

blocked

18

0

against woodwork

1

9

Corners

26

4

Offsides

7

9

Yellow cards

11

0

Red Cards

0

70

Fouls committed

88

70

Fouls suffered

63

Standings

 
 
  
Published: Monday 18 August 2014, 9.00CET

Ludogorets' Moți steeled for Steaua showdown

"The games will be spectacular," said PFC Ludogorets Razgrad defender Cosmin Moți – a former FC Dinamo Bucureşti stalwart – as his side gear up to meet FC Steaua Bucureşti.

To say that PFC Ludogorets Razgrad defender Cosmin Moți is familiar with UEFA Champions League play-off opponents FC Steaua Bucureşti would be something of an understatement.

Before arriving at Ludogorets in summer 2012, the Romanian international had spent seven seasons at Steaua's arch-rivals FC Dinamo Bucureşti and featured in 12 Bucharest derbies. The experienced centre-back is understandably steeling himself for a testing evening at the Arena Națională on Tuesday, but the renewal of old hostilities is far from the first thing on his mind.

"I expect a tough reception," Moți admitted, after the play-off draw paired Ludogorets with the 1985/86 European Champion Clubs' Cup winners. "But I don't think the tie will be special for me. The most important thing is that we reach the Champions League. It is very good for us that the first leg is in Bucharest. The stadium will be full, no doubt about it, and the pressure will be enormous, but we should be ready."

Ludogorets have come a long way in a short space of time, and Moți was one of the key during their run to the round of 16 in last season's UEFA Europa League. Nevertheless, the 29-year-old recognises that meeting the challenge posed by a club with Steaua's pedigree will be no easy matter.

©Getty Images

Cosmin Moţi in action for Dinamo in 2010

"I don't know if we have a better team than Steaua, but we will do everything in our power to qualify," said Moți. "I can't say if Steaua are favourites, but they certainly have a lot more experience than we do. They are a very good team, but we have a chance. The pressure is on Steaua.

"Personally, I did not want to play Steaua as they are a very, very strong team with a lot of experience," continued the Resita-born player. "But we believe in our abilities and for me the tie is very well balanced. The games will be spectacular, I am sure of that."

Those sentiments were echoed by Ludogorets' new Tunisian forward Hamza Younes who, after choosing the Bulgarian champions over Steaua this summer, has quickly settled into his new surroundings. Younes has been in red-hot form in front of goal, scoring in the 3-1 Bulgarian Super Cup win against PFC Botev Plovdiv and the 2-0 league defeat of PFC CSKA Sofia on Saturday.

"I am happy I scored two goals in my first two games for Ludogorets and now I am looking forward to playing against Steaua," said the 28-year-old forward. "I have already watched Steaua's two previous UEFA Champions league games and they are a very strong team. I expect a great battle."

Last updated: 18/08/14 23.19CET

Related information

Player profiles
Team profiles

http://www.uefa.com/uefachampionsleague/season=2015/matches/round=2000547/match=2014200/prematch/focus/index.html#moti+steeled+steaua

  • © 1998-2014 UEFA. All rights reserved.
  • The CHAMPIONS LEAGUE and UEFA CHAMPIONS LEAGUE words, the UEFA Champions League logo and trophy and the UEFA Champions League Final logos are protected by trade marks and/or copyright of UEFA. No use for commercial purposes may be made of such trade marks. Use of UEFA.com signifies your agreement to the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.