Thursday, July 19, 2018

Kimmich and Sule confident despite absence of Robben, Boateng

SoccerNews in UEFA Champions League 30 Apr 2018

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Bayern Munich defenders Joshua Kimmich and Niklas Sule are confident the team can advance to the Champions League final despite losing Arjen Robben and Jerome Boateng to injury.

Both Robben and Boateng had to be substituted during the 2-1 home defeat to Real Madrid in the first leg of their semi-final, and have been ruled out of the second leg at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Robben had to be replaced by Thiago Alcantara just eight minutes into the first half with an adductor problem, while Boateng came off after 34 minutes with a thigh injury that has ended his club season. 

The Bundesliga title-holders dominated the game at the Allianz Arena, but goals from Marcelo and Marco Asensio hauled Los Blancos back from a 1-0 deficit to snatch a smash-and-grab result.

And Kimmich, who scored the opening goal, pointed to the first-leg performance as evidence that the side can cope without the injured duo.

“Of course, it’s not easy to lose two such starting players, especially with them playing right next to me, with Jerome beside me and Arjen in front of me,” Kimmich told reporters in the airport before leaving for Madrid.

“But we already showed in the first leg that we’re able to play without them and we’ve had a lot of chances. That’s the goal again in Madrid but this time we have to take our chances.”

Fellow defender Sule, who is likely to start in place of the injured Boateng in Spain, was in a similarly confident mood.

The young defender said: “I think you’ve also seen the first leg, right? We’ve been the dominant and better team against Real Madrid, the team that has dominated the European football in the last years so that’s why I’m in a positive mood and I think we do have a big chance.

“It’s a Champions League semi-final tomorrow [Tuesday], so everyone is motivated 100 per cent. Of course, I’m sorry for them both and it would have been important to have them, but we’re a good team with a lot of quality and we’ll be able to make a good game.”

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