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Ancelotti on Atlético, injuries, Bale and Zidane

Published: Tuesday 20 May 2014, 15.17CET
Real Madrid CF's Carlo Ancelotti spoke to the media about Club Atlético de Madrid, injuries, Gareth Bale, the pressure of 'La Décima' and Zinédine Zidane's charisma.
by Josh Hershman
from Valdebebas
Ancelotti on Atlético, injuries, Bale and Zidane
Carlo Ancelotti thinks his vast finals experience will help Real Madrid ©Getty Images
 
 
 
Published: Tuesday 20 May 2014, 15.17CET

Ancelotti on Atlético, injuries, Bale and Zidane

Real Madrid CF's Carlo Ancelotti spoke to the media about Club Atlético de Madrid, injuries, Gareth Bale, the pressure of 'La Décima' and Zinédine Zidane's charisma.

Real Madrid CF coach Carlo Ancelotti spoke to the assembled media at the club's open day and had his say on UEFA Champions League final opponents Club Atlético de Madrid, the fitness of Pepe and Karim Benzema, Gareth Bale and the pressure of achieving 'La Décima'. A four-time European champion with AC Milan – twice as player and twice as coach – Ancelotti believes his finals experience, along with Zinédine Zidane's charisma, will help the squad.

On final opponents Atlético ...
Atlético are not a team that opens up when they attack. They are compact even when they attack. They go forward with control. We know they'll be a solid team. We've played them four times this season so we know each other well. We need to find a way to beat them. Like all finals it's going to be very even. They work well together, so to win we will need to work hard. We will need to work together and the fans will help us like they did in the quarter-final against Borussia Dortmund and the semi-final against FC Bayern München. Atlético's season shows that they have a quality team. In finals like this there is no favourite. After they won the Liga they are euphoric but we are motivated and excited because we've done well so far.

On injury doubts ...
Pepe and Karim Benzema are the only two players in doubt. Right now they can't play but we have four more days until the final and we will make a decision right at the end. [Raphaël] Varane can play in Pepe's place if needed. [Gareth] Bale didn't train today because he has a specific gym workout but I believe both he and Cristiano [Ronaldo] will be playing which is good enough for us.

©AFP/Getty Images

Bale will be fit for Saturday

On Gareth Bale ...
He has done a great job this season after injury problems at the beginning. Once he got into good physical condition he showed his quality, scoring goals and getting many assists. He has had a good impact on the team and everyone is very happy with him. He will do same in the final. He is very excited to play in the final which is his first European final and I'm sure he is going to have a fantastic match.

On the pressure of achieving 'La Décima' ...
You have to be relaxed enough to prepare for the match. The main problem is being afraid. Fear is not good. We have to take care before the game to prepare the players and the tactics. When you think about what you need to do there is no time to be afraid. 'La Décima' is not an obsession, it is a great motivation. We have such a big opportunity to go down in the history of this club. It is a huge opportunity. The chance to get 'La Décima' is very good and very positive – we'll use all our energy to achieve it.

©Getty Images

Zidane's experience will be used

On Zidane's influence ...
Zidane scored that goal in the Glasgow final in 2002. We have to think that he can give us some positive energy but not just because he scored but because of the charisma that he has. He played many times in games like this so he can help the players.

On his own final experience ...
I can provide knowledge and expertise. I was lucky enough to play many matches like this. It's my seventh final so you could say I'm quite experienced. I can give the players everything they need. I'm proud to be at Madrid for this match. There's no pressure on me.

On potential Atlético absentees ...
The truth is that Diego Costa and Arda Turan are two very good players. But Atlético have played many great games without Costa and Arda, therefore I don't think it will change the strength of their team. They are strong as a team, not as individual players.

Last updated: 21/05/14 9.14CET

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