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Osasuna want 'attacking display'

José Ángel Ziganda refuses to believe Bayer 04 Leverkusen are out of their quarter-final, and has called on CA Osasuna to add to their 3-0 advantage.

For CA Osasuna coach José Ángel Ziganda, the main enemy in their UEFA Cup quarter-final second leg is not complacency but visitors Bayer 04 Leverkusen. The Spanish side lead 3-0 after a devastating performance in Germany last week yet Ziganda genuinely fears that the quality gap between the teams is far less than the scoreline suggests.

Comeback chance
And on hearing that Leverkusen coach Michael Skibbe has categorised his own club's chances of mounting a shock comeback as "zero per cent", Ziganda, a free-scoring striker for Osasuna before taking charge last summer, poured cold water on the theory. "I've lived long enough in football to know the idea of a zero per cent chance simply doesn't exist," said the 40-year-old. "I don't believe there is a massive difference between us and Leverkusen - our attitude must be 100 per cent correct.

Attacking option
"People wrongly categorise us as a defensive team despite us winning games 4-1 and 5-1 this season, and I want an attacking display from my side against Leverkusen," Ziganda continued. "If we choose to sit back and defend our lead, or if Leverkusen force us on to the back foot, then we could suffer. This is a unique opportunity to put ourselves in the UEFA Cup semi-finals and we cannot fail. We won't play to draw, we will go in search of another victory."

Missing stars
Ziganda, whose men lost 2-0 at Real Madrid CF on Sunday, still has to cope without his injured first-choice central midfield of Iranian Javad Nekunam and local hero Patxi Puñal. With rising star Raúl García also 50/50 for that position after hurting his left ankle, it is likely that centre-back Josetxo Romero will move up to partner Iñaki Muñoz Oroz. However, the coach has no worries about the level of concentration from his charges. "The players know that the fans are excited about this tournament, that this is a massive opportunity for the club, and that the eyes of Europe are on us," he added.

German despondency
Despite Skibbe's pessimistic assessment of the possibility of an upset, he says Leverkusen are in Spain to fight for pride. Following their heaviest-ever European home loss, Skibbe's fifth-placed team were beaten 4-1 at home by VfL Bochum 1848 in the Bundesliga on Sunday. "Those two defeats need erasing and this is a chance for us to start that process," Skibbe said. "We won't gift this second leg to Osasuna and I want to see my team making it as difficult as possible for them. I will make changes and give an opportunity to one or two lads to show they are ready for this level and also fit to help us play well for the remainder of the season."

Osasuna admiration
The coach clearly has Savo Milošević and Roberto Soldado marked down for special attention at the Reyno de Navarra given his admiration for their first-leg showings. "I was very impressed with Milošević, he had a great game against us. But Osasuna were very solid defensively and then broke quickly via Soldado and Savo. I don't want it to be so easy for them in this match."

Probable teams
Ricardo López; José Izquierdo, César Cruchaga, Javier Cuéllar, Nacho Monreal; Valdo, Josetxo Romero, Iñaki Muñoz Oroz, Juanlu; Roberto Soldado, Savo Milošević.

Leverkusen: René Adler; Gonzalo Castro, Jan-Ingwer Callsen-Bracker, Ahmed Madouni, Alexander Meyer; Bernd Schneider, Pirmin Schwegler; Paul Freier, Sergej Barbarez, Athirson; Andriy Voronin.

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