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Huntelaar confident of claiming Real scalp

Carlo Ancelotti's men head into the last 16 first leg tie in Gelsenkirchen in great form, and sit top of the Spanish top flight with 63 points following a 15-match unbeaten league run.

Real are undoubted favourites to progress to the Champions League quarter-finals with victory over Jens Keller's charges.

Yet Schalke have enjoyed a recent resurgence of their own in the Bundesliga, with a seven-match unbeaten run helping the side into the top four.

And Huntelaar - who had a brief spell at Real in 2009 -  is confident of upsetting the odds.

"I think that Real Madrid is the favourite but we play the first leg at home and we are going to come out fighting," he said in an interview with Marca. "But that said, Madrid is clearly the favourite to win the round and the Champions League.

On a reunion with Real, he added: "It's special, of course, in many ways. Madrid is a great club with some fantastic people, and I used to play there. I very much look forward to playing against them.

"For me it was very special to score goals for Real Madrid, especially in front of the home crowd at the Bernabeu."