Real Madrid have a 2-1 lead on aggregate against Bayern Munich and they'll just need to draw tonight's game at the Santiago Bernabeu to clinch their presence in the semifinals. However, Bayern is surely going to give Los Blancos a run for their money. Robert Lewandowski is back with the team and the German side surely feel like they were the better side until Javi Martinez was sent off.
Here are three keys to a Real Madrid win on this tie:
- Keep a clean sheet. This one is fairly obvious. If Keylor Navas and the defenders perform well and keep a clean sheet, Bayern Munich simply cannot go through. The German side need at least two goals in order to have a chance and even a 2-1 win would not be enough for them as that would lead to an overtime. Real Madrid have conceded many goals this season and they struggle at protecting their goal, but that's what they have to do if they want to succeed.
- Control the midfield. Bayern can still be a dangerous team off counterattacks and set pieces, but the German side would surely like to control the tempo of the game and have most of the possession. That's Ancelotti's style and that is how Thiago Alcantara, Arturo Vidal and Xabi Alonso like to operate in the center of the park. Luka Modric, Toni Kroos and Casemiro will have their hands full but they could have an extra ally if Zidane picks Isco Alarcon as Gareth Bale's replacement.
- Robert Lewandowski cannot be comfortable. He is back with the team but should be in serious pain because of his shoulder. Sergio Ramos must work hard against Lewandowski so that the Polish striker doesn't gain momentum as the game progresses. If Ramos and Nacho struggle too much against him, Casemiro will be needed and that could unleash both Robben and Ribery. Needless to say, that's not what Real Madrid want.
How to watch Real Madrid vs Bayern Munich
Kick-off time: 20:45 CET, 02:45pm EST.
Venue: Estadio Santiago Bernabeu, Madrid, Spain.
Prediction: Real Madrid 2 (Ronaldo, Benzema)-1 Bayern (Robben)
Available TV: FOX Sports (USA), Antena 3 (Spain).
Available streaming: FOX Sports 2GO (USA), Fubo.TV (EVERY Real Madrid game with a high-quality and legal stream, click here to sign up and benefit from a huge offer for new members and Managing Madrid readers).
Real Madrid: Navas; Carvajal, Ramos, Nacho, Marcelo; Kroos, Casemiro, Modrić; Isco, Benzema, Ronaldo.
Out: Pepe (ribs), Varane (hamstring), Bale (calf)
Misses next match if booked: Modrić, Ramos, Kroos
Bayern: Neuer; Lahm, Alonso, Alaba, Bernat; Vidal, Thiago; Robben, Ribéry; Lewandowski, Müller.
Out: Javi Martínez (suspended)
Doubtful: Boateng (adductor), Hummels (ankle)
Misses next match if booked: Boateng, Vidal