Real Madrid is all set to resume their quest for a UEFA Champions League title, as the star-studded Los Blancos take on Bayern Munich on Wednesday at Estadio Santiago Bernabeu in Madrid, Spain.
Madrid punched its way to the semifinal round of the Champions League after staving off Borussia Dortmund 3-2 in their quarterfinal showdown. Now, Carlo Ancelotti's squad is facing a much stiffer challenge in the presence of defending champions Bayern Munich, which needed a 3-1 performance in the second leg of their quarterfinal face-off with Manchester United to make their return bid in the semis.
Ancelotti said his guys are ready to battle with the German football powerhouse despite the absence of their leading goal-scorer and arguably the best football player in the world in Cristiano Ronaldo.
"Cristiano trained normally today, he's trained well in the last few days and tomorrow he's going to have more tests and then we'll make our decision," Ancelotti told a press conference via ESPN FC.
"If everyone is everyone is certain he can play without any problems at all, then of course he will play. I am confident he will play, but we're going to make the decision tomorrow (Wednesday)."
Ancelotti said he would not dare to try the same mistake Barcelona made a year ago, when they decided to let a badly-injured Lionel Messi play against Munich also in the semis of the Champions League. The Italian tactician added he may sit Ronaldo in the first leg, than putting him at risk ahead of the more important second leg Munich next week.
"If there's any risk of a relapse he won't play. We have to remember that this tie is not going to be decided tomorrow. We may be able to gain an advantage from the home leg, but the really decisive game is next Tuesday in Munich," Ancelotti stated.
Meanwhile, Bayern Munich head coach Pep Guardiola believed his team's competitiveness dropped a notch when they wrapped up the German Bundes Liga title in March. Then again, he stressed his team will get back to tip-top shape once they play Real Madrid in the battle of the European powerhouses.
"Normally, when you win a title, you lose your desire and focus a little - you lose this zeal. That is why I am so proud of my team, because last year they won everything and the coach changed and they accepted my little changes and this year we have won the Bundesliga, we are in final of the cup and semi-finals of the Champions League," Guardiola stated in an interview.
Live Stream, Schedule & Stats
Real Madrid vs. Bayern Munich UEFA Champions League semifinal match will start at 4:45 a.m (Perth Time). Live Stream feed is available on Sports TV Live while statistics and live commentary is available on ESPN FC.