Real Faces Reality Of Comeback Task

Picture: AFP/heraldsun.com.au
Cristiano Ronaldo scored Real's only goal in the first leg. Image courtesy of heraldsun.com.au/AFP
About the only thing Real Madrid can take out of the first leg of its UEFA Champions League semi-final against Borussia Dortmund is that it is in a better position than fellow Spanish side Barcelona, after both sides conceded four goals to German opposition. At least Real has the benefit of an away goal in its back pocket thanks to Cristiano Ronaldo’s strike just before half-time in the 4-1 thumping at the Westfalenstadion, while Barca has four goals to make up on Thursday morning (AEST).

There has been plenty of chat about Jose Mourinho’s future in the wake of the first leg disaster, with suggestions he may head back to Stamford Bridge, while former Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti is allegedly on contention for Mourinho’s job. That speculation can’t be helping a team which needs to focus on the three-goal deficit it faces on Wednesday morning at the Bernabeu.

Mourinho has suggested his team needs to play closer attention to Dortmund striker Robert Lewandowski, which would probably seem an appropriate tactic given he netted all four goals in the first leg. Both teams rested almost their entire starting XIs for domestic matches at the weekend. Real beat Atletico in the Madrid derby 2-1 to hold off its cross-town rival for second in La Liga, while the Germans beat Fortuna Dusseldorf by the same scoreline in the Bundesliga.

The Merengues have an imposing record at home in this competition having lost just two of their last 19 games at the Bernabeu. They were lucky to escape with a 2-2 draw when they hosted Dortmund in the group stage of the Champions League earlier this season, and in reality they have been thoroughly outplayed in the teams’ three meetings so far. 

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