Friday. 02.12.2022
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE

Ancelotti: Casemiro will play semi-final second leg 'for sure'

Ancelotti believes the midfield lynchpin will play in the return leg at the Santiago Bernabeu on May 4, though he is less certain on Alaba

26 April 2022, United Kingdom, Manchester: Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti and Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola greet each other before the start of the UEFA Champions League Semi Final, First Leg, soccer match between Manchester City and Real Madrid at the Etihad Stadium. Photo: Martin Rickett/PA Wire/dpa.
Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti and Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola greet each other before the match. Photo: Martin Rickett/dpa.

Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti confirmed Casemiro will play in his side's Champions League semi-final second leg against Manchester City.

The 30-year-old was sorely missed at the base of midfield for Los Blancos as they lost Tuesday's first leg 4-3, lacking both defensive solidity and flexible positioning off the ball in possession with Toni Kroos in his place.

The Brazilian was an unused substitute after missing their 3-1 win over Osasuna last Thursday, due to muscular problems. Meanwhile, David Alaba was also forced off at half-time, making way for Nacho in the centre of defence.

Ancelotti believes the midfield lynchpin will play in the return leg at the Santiago Bernabeu on May 4, though he is less certain on Alaba.

"Casemiro [will play], for sure," he said. "We will have to evaluate Alaba. He felt discomfort in recent times. I think they will both be ready for the second leg."

City were largely the better team on Tuesday and got off to a flying start with two goals within the opening 11 minutes.

'Capacity for reaction'

Through a Karim Benzema brace and a particularly timely solo goal from Vinicius to make it 3-2, Real Madrid managed to stay in the tie and limit the damage.

According to Ancelotti, a place in May's final is still there for the taking but only if they do not throw it away first.

"It is difficult for us to see a game like today's in the second leg again," he said. "City have an advantage, we have to take it into account but knowing that it is not a great advantage. We are going to fight for another magical night.

"We started very badly, too soft. We have conceded two goals and from then on, we have shown in recent times, a great capacity for reaction.

"We were in the game until the end, we competed. We have to defend better and with the ball we did well, with many opportunities. For the second leg, we have to defend better it is too important."

Ancelotti: Casemiro will play semi-final second leg 'for sure'
Comments