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Tuchel calls for care

Real Madrid will play Chelsea in midweek Champions League semi-final for the first time in the competition.

Historically the Blues have an excellent record against Los Blancos having never lost against them in a competitive competition.

Winning in the 1998 UEFA Super Cup, which was the last time the pair met competitively, prior to which the pair met in the 1971 Cup Winner’s Cup and Chelsea won 2-1 and drew 1-1.

Thomas Tuchel pointed out that Chelsea will need to be very careful as they recover from the 1-0 win against West Ham.

“Today we played at a high, high level against a strong opponent. It was a good response,” said Tuchel.

 

Chelsea’s German head coach Thomas Tuchel gestures during the English Premier League football match between Liverpool and Chelsea at Anfield in Liverpool, north west England on March 4, 2021. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths / POOL / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or ‘live’ services. Online in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No video emulation. Social media in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No use in betting publications, games or single club/league/player publications. / (Photo by LAURENCE GRIFFITHS/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

“We only have two days to recover. We need to be very careful now in the recovery process.”

The German coach will also be delighted that is compatriot Timo Werner got on the scoresheet and raised his confidence ahead of the semi-final.

Zidane leaves clues

Meanwhile prepared in the worst possible way as they dropped points against Real Betis in the chase for the La Liga title.

Need a cider able to record a goal in the match and it was clear from the Down’s team selection that he had the game against Chelsea in mind despite the desperate need for points in the title race.

Atletico Madrid now sit with an opportunity to go 5 points ahead of their city rivals, even Barcelona have the opportunity to go above their fierce historic opponents should they win their two games in hand.

Spanish outlet Mundo Deportivo though believe that a number of selections hint towards the team choice for midweek.

Nacho Fernandez playing on the left of the back four and Ferland Mendy kept in reserve before he plays a more advanced role on the left hand side.

 

MADRID, SPAIN – APRIL 06: Ferland Mendy of Real Madrid competes for the ball with Trent Alexander-Arnold of Liverpool FC during the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final match between Real Madrid and Liverpool FC at Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano on April 06, 2021 in Madrid, Spain. Sporting stadiums around Spain remain under strict restrictions due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in games being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)

Vinicius Junior, the scorer against Liverpool, was also rested with Marco Asensio and Rodrygo playing in the wide areas to little effect against the Seville-based club.

Toni Kroos, who has not been available for the last 3 matches, will be desperately needed back by Zidane to help control the midfield battle.

Whoever starts, it is setup to be a huge match in Europe’s elite competition between two of the clubs who tried to leave it.

 

 

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