Only Atletico Madrid stand in the way of Real Madrid who are just one away from winning their much coveted ‘La Decima’ and coach Carlo Ancelotti has said that he is optimistic of his sides’ chances.
Ancelotti knows that the final against Atletico will not be easy and hence he has given a simple advice to his players: play like the way you did against Bayern Munich. “I have a dream, to see us playing like we did against Bayern” said the Italian.
Ancelotti confirmed today that the star striker Ronaldo will be playing in the final. And the Italian is seemingly pleased with the recovery of the Portuguese superstar. “He is a very important weapon for us. We need the best of him. He has played a fantastic Champions League, scoring 16 goals and has helped his team reach the final.”
However, there are still concerns over the fitness of Pepe and Karim Benzema. Frenchman Raphael Varane is expected to start the final in place of Pepe.
Both Pepe and Benzema did participate in the training today but the coach has not taken any decision yet. “Today’s training session is important to evaluate how they both are. Cristiano and Bale haven’t got any problems to play and have trained well. Pepe and Benzema have to be looked at more closely. Today they start training with us and after we’ll make a decision regarding tomorrow. Will have to be examined to see if his calf injury is any better”, Ancelotti confirmed.
The fitness of Karim Benzema is the biggest headache for the coach and he accepted that the Frenchman will be missed. Meanwhile, Ancelotti has hinted that Isco will start the game is Benzema doesn’t recoveres. “Karim has had a fantastic season. I don’t know what we will lose by putting another player on with different characteristics., but I don’t think this will be a game where individuals will make the difference: Two teams face each other, and the most united of the two will win the game.”
Ancelotti also stressed that he is not feeling the pressure of this huge game feeling very calm. He said: “I am calm. In these games you don’t have to work so hard in the preparation because the players are already so motivated. You just have to keep them calm and give them very clear instructions for the game.”
Real Madrid last won the Champions League in 2002 which was there ninth title. However, Los Blancos were never able to reach the finals in past 11 occassions. And now, Madrid are hoping to end their long wait and to become the first team to win 10 Champions League trophies.