Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo (right) has warned his side to be wary of Bayern Munich’s attacking threat as the Spanish giants attempt to overturn a first-leg deficit and reach the Champions League final tonight. Madrid suffered a 2-1 defeat at the Allianz Arena last week with Mario Gomez netting a late winner for Bayern after Mesut Ozil had cancelled out Franck Ribery’s opener for the hosts.
Ozil’s away goal means that Madrid will progress through with a 1-0 win at the Bernabeu, but Ronaldo knows it may not be easy keeping Bayern’s strikeforce quiet. Asked which Bayern player worries him most, Ronaldo told the Bwin.com website: “The players who play up front concern us most. Gomez is one of the leading goalscorers in the Champions League, and Ribery and (Arjen) Robben are also very dangerous.
“They are very good up front, and at the back as well, but we have to be focussed on the four in attack because it is one of them who will make the difference.”
Nevertheless, the Portugal international is confident it will be his side progressing through to next month’s final in Munich as Madrid seek a record 10th European Cup crown. “We are well. I’m sure that at home we are going to win because we are playing in our stadium, in front of our own fans and we have everything we need to be able to win,” he added. “It’s going to be a very difficult game, but I’m hopeful of a Madrid win. They played at home and won, but we got a goal there, which is also important. I hope we reach the final because it is very important to us players, to Real Madrid and to our fans.
Heynckes salutes Real
Bayern coach Jupp Heynckes is preparing for a “battle of the giants”.“Tomorrow is going to be spectacular. It is going to be a real treat with everything which belongs in such a football game. Just a fortnight ago, people were saying that Barca are the be all and end all, but now Real have gone and won in Barcelona.“It will be a battle of the giants. Both clubs have a great history and I am looking forward to it, and I hope it has a positive outcome for us,” said Heynckes.
>> Mario Gomez VS Pepe:
Gomez led Bayern’s attacks with aplomb from the first whistle in the first leg. Brazilian Pepe will need to use all his strengths to prevent Gomez from scoring an away goal in Madrid.
>> Ronaldo VS Phillip Lahm:
Lahm will have to work extra hard to keep Ronaldo — high on confidence after scoring the winning-goal in last week’s El Clasico against Barca — quiet.
>> Benzema VS Jerome Boateng
Benzema’s high work-rate will make him a constant nuisance for Bayern. Boateng will have to be at his best to tame the Frenchman.