Captain Sergio Ramos returns to the Real Madrid squad for the trip to London, whilst Ferland Mendy and Fede Valverde also return to the fold.
Real Madrid midfielder Toni Kroos termed the defensive strength of the La Liga giants as an important factor when it comes to recording a triumph against teams like Chelsea. Kroos was interacting with the media ahead of the second leg of the semi-finals of the UEFA Champions League against Chelsea. The German footballer expressed his strong belief that the players would be giving their all on the field, with a strong emphasis on the importance of maintaining a quality performance.
“Our quality will be important. There’s no question that we’ll be giving our all. That’s what we have to do and the rest is down to how things pan out during the game and the quality on show. That’s what we have to do to get through to the final,” he said as quoted by the official website of Real Madrid.
“We’re strong defensively and that’s important when it comes to getting through a tie like this one and against opponents like Chelsea. We’re capable of progressing and are going to prepare properly for the game. We have to create a bit more than we did in the first leg. We’re going to need to do that if we’re to get through the tie,” added Kroos.
The 31-year-old termed an inability to press the Chelsea defence effectively in the opening 35 minutes of the first leg, as a major factor behind the 1-1 draw.
“In the opening 35 minutes of the first leg, we didn’t press their defence well and we were too late in getting at them. That’s exactly what they wanted with the quality they’ve got up top and they can exploit that along with their pace. We improved after the opening 35 minutes. We dropped deeper and were more compact and that helped us. We didn’t create much in the second half, but we’re comfortable when we’re in possession,” he said.
However, Kroos termed the La Liga giants as being capable of matching the English club physically in the second leg, with Real Madrid welcoming back players who weren’t involved in the first leg.
“We’re capable of matching Chelsea in physical terms. We’ve welcomed some players back who weren’t involved in the first leg. We’ve lost Varane, but everyone who’s here is here to play and fight. It’s important that we show our quality out there and not just our physical strength,” stated the German midfielder.
On a concluding note, the 31-year-old stated that he liked hearing the Real Madrid midfield being termed the best in world football.
“I don’t watch other teams’ games and I can only comment on us. I like to hear people say that. Casemiro, Modric and I are giving our all to win something. It doesn’t count for anything if you’re the best midfield but then don’t win anything. We’re having a good season and that’s what we’re here for at this club,” read the message from Kroos.