Bayern Munich winger Franck Ribery admits he must stay in control of his temper when the Bundesliga leaders face Borussia Dortmund on Saturday.
The experienced former France international has been scrutinised for much of this season for failing to keep his frustrations in check.
Head coach Carlo Ancelotti criticised Ribery for clashing with Felipe Melo in pre-season against Inter, while similar incidents involving Hamburg’s Nicolai Muller and Dortmund youngster Felix Passlack have prompted further questions over his temperament.
And the 33-year-old concedes that he will need to toe the line when the champions meet Thomas Tuchel’s side at Signal Iduna Park.
”A match against Dortmund is always emotional,” he told TZ. “But that’s no problem. I know I have to control myself in these situations.
“The match is important, the atmosphere is tense and the fans want to see our best performance. You have to try and not let yourself to be bothered by that too much.
”It is very, very important for us. A match against Dortmund is like a derby – the pressure is always huge.”
Bayern issued a denial on Thursday after it was claimed that Ribery had agreed a new contract to keep him at the Allianz Arena until 2018.
The former Marseille winger says negotiations are progressing well but stopped short of saying whether an agreement will be reached.
“It’s not looking bad, but I can’t say how the solution will look in the end,” he said, before adding: “Bayern and I are like a couple.”
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