Bayern Munich v Real Madrid
Bayern Munich v Real Madrid Champions League Semi-Final First Leg
They have 13 European cups between them. They are two of the biggest names in World football. Champions League semi-final. This is a match of truly epic proportions.
Real Madrid and Bayern Munich have met 18 times in European competition, Bayern won 10, Madrid 6, with two draws. Bayern also sent Madrid packing from the Champions League in 2007 in the round of 16. So there’s history, and we’re about to witness the latest chapter.
Munich have the extra dangling carrot of a home Champions League final at their resplendent Allianz Arena to offer yet more motivation, if it were required. With danger man Arjen Robben in their ranks he will be looking to do well against his former team.
And with the Bundesliga title likely lost to rivals Borussia Dortmund they can afford to focus all of their efforts on reaching that final with home field advantage.
Controversial manager Jose Mourinho has been previewing the game in his own unique style. Claiming that Bayern regard themselves as favourites. A famous quote from Der Kaiser himself, Franz Beckenbauer, will no doubt be ringing in Mourinho’s ears as well.
‘Just because you wear a cashmere sweater that does not make you a gentleman. He is a rude, loutish man.’
Unlikely Jose has forgotten that. So there is not only history between these two European super-clubs. There’s bad blood.
If Robben and Franck Ribery are the danger men for Bayern it will come as no surprise who the Germans fear most from Madrid’s lineup; Cristiano Ronaldo.
The hair gelled one has been simply astonishing in performance after performance for Madrid this year. And in any other era, in a Messi-less era, he would be regarded as the best player in the World. By a country mile.
Between the two-legs of this potentially absorbing encounter Madrid have the small matter of another El Clasico. Mourinho will be cranking up the focus of his men before their battle in Germany. He will need to keep the players attention entirely where it should be. It could be difficult; everything in the lives of Barcelona and Real Madrid revolves around the rivalry that defines them.
History. Bad blood. Some of the best players in the World. This match has it all.
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