‘Minjae Kim vs Bellingham’ a done deal

Tuchel “Derrikht not 100% sure of UCL quarter-final selection”

Bayern Munich head coach Thomas Tuchel has a center-back conundrum ahead of a crucial clash.

Bayern Munich will take on Real Madrid at the Allianz Arena in Munich, Germany, on May 1 at 4:00 a.m. ET in the first leg of the 2023-23 UEFA Champions League semifinals.

As the season draws to a close, the tournament that will crown this season’s Champions League champion is also nearing its semifinals. The winner between Munich and Real will face the winner of the quarterfinal between Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) and Borussia Dortmund in the final.

The Bavarians, who are looking to win their first Champions League title in four years after the 2019-20 season, meet Spanish La Liga giants Real on their way to the final. The two teams will first play the first leg at home in Munich before meeting on May 9 at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu in Madrid, Spain, for the second leg of the semifinals.

Ahead of the crucial first leg at home, Tuchel took part in a pre-match press conference. During the press conference, Tuchel raised eyebrows when he sighed about the injuries ahead of the first leg against Real.

According to German outlet TZ, Tuchel admitted that he doesn’t know which players he will start against Real in the first leg. Currently, Jamal Musalla, Leroy Sane, Matthijs Dier, Dayo Upamecano, and Konrad Reimer are all doubtful for the game due to injury.

During the press conference, Tuchel was asked about the availability of Durich and Reimer. Both players started the 2023-24 Bundesliga Round 31 home match against Eintracht Frankfurt on April 27, but were substituted early due to injury.

“I can’t be 100% sure at the moment,” Tuchel said of their selection. “In my opinion, Reimer’s condition is better than Derrikht and Upamecano. We have to wait a few more hours and then train with them.”

“We’ll see how training goes today, Reimer will be tested, Dürich and Upamecano are still early, but we’ll see,” he said. “Sane will also have a chance to be a last-minute option, while Musial will have to wait to train.”

Despite the injury list, Tuchel is excited about the upcoming clash with Real: “It’s definitely a very big, shiny game that everyone is really looking forward to,” he said, “It’s a Champions League semifinal, it’s a game that deserves to be seen, so we’re looking forward to it.”

“We need tactics and we need luck, we need good combinations and balance,” he said, adding: “The players want to see plans and ideas, but they also need freedom, they also need luck on the pitch. We need everything to beat Real.”

“We need the best atmosphere and a crowd that supports us in difficult moments,” he said of the first leg of the semifinals, “We need maximum support to get 토토사이트 through the painful phase we are in, and we need to create an atmosphere in our favor with the crowd,” he added, calling on the home fans to show their support.

Meanwhile, Tuchel has been unable to confirm the availability of two of Munich’s four center backs, leaving the door open for Kim Min-Jae to shut down one of the world’s top clubs. Upamecano suffered a sprained ankle in training recently, while Durich, who was subbed off in Frankfurt, has not trained with the team since.

If Derrikht and Upamecano are unable to recover quickly enough to play against Real, Munich will have no choice but to start the center-back duo of Kim Min-Jae and Eric Dier in the first leg of the Champions League semifinals.

South Korean defender Kim Min-jae joined Munich last summer and was a consistent starter for the first half of the season, serving as the team’s core center back, but in the second half of the season, he began to lose his place in the starting lineup and started more often off the bench.

After Kim was dropped from the starting lineup, it was Dier and Derrikht who formed Munich’s first-choice center back combination. The duo started both the first and second leg of the Champions League quarterfinals against Arsenal, helping the Bavarians secure victories and advance to the last four.

Dier and Diricht were expected to start the Champions League semifinal first leg against Real, given their steady performances in the second half of the season, including the two games against Arsenal, but Diricht’s availability is in doubt after picking up a minor injury.

Upamecano is also recovering from injury, so if Tuchel decides not to push Derrikht, he could choose Kim Min-Jae as Dier’s partner in the starting lineup against Real.

Kim, who was knocked out of the Champions League in the quarterfinals last season while playing for SSC Napoli, will be playing in his first Champions League semifinal since his professional debut if he starts the first leg against Real. The first leg of the semifinals could be the most important game of his career, as Real boast one of the world’s best offenses, led by the likes of Jude Bellingham and Vinicius Junior.

In the previous game, Kim had come on as a second-half substitute at the start of the second half against Frankfurt, and he was able to improve his game. It will be interesting to see if he gets his chance and starts at home against Real.

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