Carlo Ancelotti’s team are favourites to win the 2014 Champions League final against Atletico
Real Madrid have already landed the Copa del Rey this season although missing out on La Liga title to Atletico will have rankled with the powers-that-be at the Bernabeu who will now hope to see Los Merengues win in Lisbon on Saturday night.
Real have won the European Cup on nine occasions in their history, with Ancelotti’s side the bookmaker favourites to claim victory number ten, having come through against Bayern Munich in the semi-finals.
Madrid’s Portuguese superstar Cristiano Ronaldo said on www.uefa.com: “It is a moment that all Madridistas are dreaming about – the ‘decima’.
“It is a trophy we have been looking to win for many years. Real Madrid have wanted it for a long time. Since the first day we came here, we’ve felt that positive pressure to win the Champions League. We feel like we are now one small step away from winning.”
Sergio Ramos is playing in his first Champions League final added on the Bwin website: “It’s a unique experience. It’s a reward for all the sacrifice and hard work over so many years.
“Although we look it from the perspective of the group, this is the pay-off for the work the team has put in throughout the last few years, during which time we hadn’t been fortunate enough to reach the final. At last the time has come to experience this amazing moment.”
However, Atletico won’t be easily beaten and Diego Simeone is expecting his team to put up a stern challenge to Real.
Simeone, who has already won the league, Copa del Rey and Europa League in just three seasons as Atletico coach, said: “It’s the fruit of the labour that we’ve been doing for nearly three years.
“We responded well in the Europa League a year and a half ago, if I remember rightly. We still have the same humility, the same group ethic.”