Wolfsburg insist they will take their opportunity to make club history by beating Manchester United on Tuesday and book their place in the Champions League’s knockout for the first time.
Wolfsburg lead Group B and need just one point against Louis van Gaal’s United to qualify for the last 16 in Europe, but must win to be sure of progressing as group winners.
A sell-out 26 400 crowd is expected, especially with the added spice of Germany captain Bastian Schweinsteiger set to feature for the Red Devils.
“We’re playing for the win,” said coach Dieter Hecking as defeat could see Wolfsburg miss out on the last 16 altogether.
“I know that the team will give everything to use this historic chance.”
Wolfsburg are licking their wounds after losing 2-1 at home to Borussia Dortmund last Saturday when Japan midfielder Shinji Kawaga hit the winner with virtually the last kick of the Bundesliga match.
It was Wolfsburg’s first home defeat in 29 games.
In a dramatic final two minutes, Ricardo Rodriguez’s 90th minute penalty put Wolfsburg level before Kagawa struck the winner just seconds before the final whistle.
“It was a very, very bitter defeat. It cost us so much strength to come back from 1-0 down and we took no points despite a good second-half,” said Wolfsburg captain Diego Benaglio.
“It’s not a bad thing that our next game comes straight away and we have to get the Dortmund defeat out of our heads.”
Wolfsburg are eager to reach the knock-out stages in Europe for the first time in the club’s history, almost six years to the day after losing to United 3-1 at home when they crashed out of the Champions League in 2009.
“We need to cut out the simple mistake,” said Wolfsburg’s Germany midfielder Julian Draxler.
“If we play like we did in the second-half against Dortmund, I am sure we will win against United.”
United are second in the group and must win in Wolfsburg to be sure of progressing.