Bayern Munich boss Carlo Ancelotti is keen to avoid a second humiliation of his career at the hands of Carl Zeiss Jena when his side travel to take on the fourth-tier minnows in the DFB Pokal.
During his playing days with Roma, Ancelotti was on the receiving end of an astonishing comeback in the 1981 UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup, as a 3-0 first-leg advantage was overturned by a 4-0 defeat against the then FDGB Cup holders, who progressed all the way to the final and defeat against Dinamo Tblisi.
“That was not good. This defeat is unforgettable,” he told a pre-match news conference ahead of Friday’s match.
“When I hear Jena I remember that, of course. We were not arrogant, we were just surprised by the intensity. We could easily have lost 10-0.
“I look to 36 years ago and hope it works differently this time. There can always be surprises. This is true of all countries. The big clubs always have to be careful and focused.”
Bayern count Arjen Robben, Kingsley Coman, Douglas Costa, Renato Sanches, Jerome Boateng, Xabi Alonso, Holger Badstuber and Thiago Alcantara among their absentees for the clash, but Jena boss Mark Zimmerman knows his team face a monumental task against the holders and urged his players to embrace the occasion.
“We must not be afraid of the world-class players, the guys are confident,” he said.
“A lot has to happen for us to beat Bayern but we want to be brave.”