Munich - Germany against England is one of the great sporting rivalries. It positively drips with tradition, passion and history. On Matchday 4 of the UEFA Champions League the rivalry hosts its latest installment as Borussia Dortmund welcome Arsenal FC and FC Schalke 04 travel to Chelsea FC.

Markus Babbel knows both sides of the dividing line having represented five-time European Champions FC Bayern München and Liverpool FC with distinction as a defender. sat down with the 41-year-old former Bundesliga coach to discuss Dortmund and Schalke’s chances against their London-based counterparts on Wednesday. Mr. Babbel, it’s another Germany-England duel in the Champions League on Wednesday. We’ll begin with the Schwarz-Gelben, how do you rate their chances?

Markus Babbel: Dortmund are making a very solid impression on Europe. They’ve been playing with total conviction, and therefore have a very good chance of beating Arsenal. What do you think will tip the game in Dortmund’s favour? Could the tricky away leg, although they won 2-1, be in the back of their minds?

Babbel: Jürgen Klopp’s men have one huge advantage in that they’re playing at home. They’ll have their wonderful fans behind them which will encourage them to go forward. They’ll be able to impose more pressure than in the last game, where they got themselves into trouble more often than they’d have liked. They’ll need to be wary though, Arsenal are regaining some of their old strength. What role will the 6-1 win over Stuttgart play? Will it be important?

Babbel: You can imagine that they’ll go into the game full of confidence, but that doesn’t mean it won’t be anything but extremely hard work. Obviously, winning is great, but as soon as the whistle blows you focus on implementing the plan to beat Arsenal. How would you rate Dortmund’s chances of qualifying?

Babbel: Their position at the moment is excellent. If they make it two wins from two at home, then they’ll have a great opportunity to qualify. It’s in their own hands. I think how well they played in the Champions League last season has helped them enormously this time around. The team has established themselves, matured, and laid down a marker. What makes Arsenal stand out and such a dangerous opponent?

Babbel: In the last few years, Arsenal have had some real difficulties after losing their big names. Their younger players though, in particular Jack Wilshere and Aaron Ramsey, have matured. With Mesut Özil, I firmly believe they found the missing piece. He fits perfectly into coach Arsene Wenger’s style of play. At the moment, they’re playing attractively and are incredibly dangerous. Along with Özil, Andre Schürrle has also made his way to the English capital. His Chelsea side welcome Schalke. How would you rate Schalke’s chances of picking up a good result in London?

Babbel: It’ll be extremely difficult, but Chelsea are beatable. They lost 2-0 at the weekend, yet their task is definitely harder than Dortmund’s. What will be key at Stamford Bridge?

Babbel: Chelsea have got lots of quality. Schalke mustn’t hide. They need to defend well and be alert at all times. Up front, despite their injuries, they’ve still got plenty of class, be it Max Meyer or Julian Draxler. You can’t let a game like this overwhelm you, otherwise it’ll be even harder. What were your thoughts after their 3-0 home loss?

Babbel: The loss was pretty silly from their point of view really. The way they played, they shouldn’t have lost. The goals were all soft and they were too naïve. They’ll have to eradicate that for this game. How would you explain Schalke’s difference in performance level between the Bundesliga and the Champions League?

Babbel: They’ve had to cope with injuries all season, which hasn’t helped in the Bundesliga. They’ve still got a top-class squad, even if Klaas-Jan Huntelaar and Jefferson Farfan are sidelined. They’ve got plenty of young talents trying to finding their way. Suddenly, the experience is gone and the youngsters have to take on more responsibility. That’s hard. Obviously, sometimes it comes off, but too much shouldn’t be expected too early. Most recently, Schalke won 2-0 against Hertha Berlin. Will that vital away win come into play ahead of this game?

Babbel: That win was hugely important. If they’d lost in Berlin, their mindset travelling to Chelsea would have been negative. Instead though, they can breathe a sigh of relief, and know that their self-confidence is coming back. Against Chelsea their challenge is to make the impossible, possible.

Interview by Yannik Schmidt/Translation by Daniel Thacker

Check out Schalke starlet Julian Draxler in an exclusive interview with the official Bundesliga YouTube channel: