Zidane says Real Madrid must be determined to beat Bayern in UCL semis

Zidane says Real Madrid must be determined to beat Bayern in UCL semis

- Bayern Munich host Real Madrid on Wednesday, April 25, in the 1st leg of their UEFA Champions League clash at the Allianz Arena

- Los Blancos are the defending champions of the competition and they will be gunning for their 3rd straight title this season

- However, Zidane has called his players to be more focused in a bid to beat the Bayern in the game

Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane says his players must be determined to stand a chance of playing in their third straight UEFA Champions League final next month.

Los Blancos saw off stiff competition from Juventus in the quarterfinal stage to reach the semifinal stage where they will battle German League champions, Bayern Munich on Wednesday.

Having won the title in the last two seasons, the Galacticos are plotting to become the first team to win the silverware three consecutive times after Bayern in the mid-1970s.

While the duo of Cristiano Ronaldo and Sergio Ramos will be appearing for the eighth consecutive time at the last four stage of the championship.

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The Spanish League campaigners have a better record over their German side in recent times, with the Galacticos winning all five of last meetings, and also eliminated the Bundesliga side in last year's quarterfinals and the 2014 semis.

Zidane, while speaking at the pre-match conference ahead of their clash on Wednesday, April 25 said it is always in the club’s DNA to reach the latter stages of the championship, but must be focused and determined to scale through.

"It is the determination we have," he said. "This club has always been at this level. It is the DNA of this club, its history.

"In the end that determination is most important, as you are playing very good teams. Tomorrow will be another difficult match, but we are happy to be able to play these types of games."

Though, Madrid have only managed to win one of their last four games in all competitions, but Zidane is unfazed by their performances in those games, saying they would have no problem finding motivation in Munich.

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"It is more difficult when, how can I say it ... well, it has happened to us this year in La Liga where we have lacked consistency, especially earlier in the season -- but in these types of games my players are at 150 percent, I've no doubts about that," he said.

Zidane also believes Colombia international, James Rodriguez, will want to prove a point to him as a footballer, adding that he doesn’t have anything against the attacking midfielder.

"James will be motivated as he is a footballer and will want to do well, but not to show anything to me or anything like that.

"Anybody who thinks I am against James is wrong -- he is a good player and will show that for sure. I never had a problem with James, it was just he wanted to play more, needed that, and I understood.

"This year will be the same -- there are players who are on the bench. This is the most difficult part of being a coach."

Zidane took over at the Santiago Bernabeu in 2016 and since then, he has won two Champions League titles for the club.

Though, they have not been impressive in the domestic league this season, another UEFA top tier title will ensure they wrap up their season on a high.

During his playing days, he won the same title with Los Blancos in the 2002-03 season – about four years after winning the FIFA World Cup trophy with France on home soil.

He also led the French team to win the 2000 edition of the UEFA Championship title which was staged in Belgium and the Netherlands.

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Source: Naija.ng

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