Bayern lost 1-0 in Madrid in the semi-final first leg last week, despite dominating the match with over 65 per cent of possession. That superiority must now be converted into goals.
“I’ve thought a lot about our tactics,” said Guardiola at his pre-match press conference on Monday. “I was delighted with the way we controlled the first leg but we were lacking the necessary purpose and aggression in attack. I still need another night to sleep on how we’ll find the right balance.” Ponder he might, as Bastian Schweinsteiger and Co. cannot afford to be caught on the break again as they were so ruthlessly in Madrid - an away goal for the Spaniards would leave the hosts needing to hit three in reply to reach the final in Lisbon on 24 May.
Indeed, keeping the explosive likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema at arm’s length will be no easy task. “I can’t imagine they’ll defend their lead for 90 minutes,” Guardiola continued. “Their players don’t have the mentality to be able to do that. They’re very good on the break but also have the ability to control a game themselves.“
Ribery in the spotlight
Crucial to Bayern’s chances of breaking down their guests will be Franck Ribery, who found the net once more at the weekend after struggling to make an impact in Madrid. Guardiola said that the Frenchman must be “angry with his coach, with the crowd but above all with himself”, in order to be able to fully unleash his “energy and aggression”, before calling on the club’s supporters to make their presence felt.
“We cannot do it by ourselves,” said the Spaniard. “We need the fans to push us towards the final. The team want it, I want it, the fans want it, and together we can achieve it. Our dream is to fly to Lisbon.” One more good night’s sleep from Guardiola and that dream could well come true.
Bayern: Neuer – Lahm, Boateng, Dante, Alaba – Martinez, Schweinsteiger – Robben, Müller, Ribery - Mandzukic
Real Madrid: Casillas – Carvajal, Pepe, Ramos, Coentrao – Modric, Alonso - Di Maria, Bale, Ronaldo - Benzema