Preview: Leverkusen vs CSKA Moscow

Bayer Leverkusen face a tough task when they welcome Russia champions CSKA Moscow to the BayArena for their Champions League group stage opener on Wednesday.

CSKA have had a strong start to the new Russian league season, claiming four wins and two draws in six unbeaten games to kick off the campaign. More impressively, they have conceded just one goal in the process.

Unfortunately city rivals Spartak Moscow have a had a slightly better start and hold a two-point advantage over them at the top of the table, but their early form will give them plenty of confidence heading to Germany in midweek.

While the defence has looked rock solid so far, one area of concern will be up front as they've only managed to score more than once on a single occasion, the 3-0 win over Terek Grozny on Saturday.

Leverkusen, on the other hand, will be happy with their recovery after losing their opening game of the season to beating Hamburg 3-1 at the weekend in preparation for the visit of CSKA.

The Bundesliga outfit received a boost prior to the match with the news that star goalkeeper Bernd Leno had decided to extend his contract with the club.

His previous deal was due to expire at the end of the current season and their were rumours he was considering a move to another country for a new challenge.

"He's a complete goalkeeper even if he has the potential to improve even further. When you can secure a key player like that then it's a good sign for the club and for us as a team," Schmidt said.

Leverkusen have a clean bill of health ahead of the crucial encounter, while CSKA will be without Aleksandrs Cauna, who is recovering from surgery following fracturing his shoulder.

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