"Bayern must make most of Real clash"

Jupp Heynckes has urged his Bayern Munich players to take advantage of the "once in a lifetime" opportunity to play a Champions League final on home soil.

Seconds after kick-off...

Bayern host nine-time European champions Real Madrid in the first leg of their semi-final tie on Tuesday night and Heynckes believes the fact the final will be held in Munich at the Allianz Arena provides his players with even more incentive against Jose Mourinho's men.

"It is certainly a very special motivation that the final takes place in the Allianz Arena," he said at the pre-match press conference.

"This is probably a once in a lifetime opportunity."

With Bayern all but mathematically out of the running for the Bundesliga title, victory in Europe is now their main priority.

Saturday's goalless home draw with Mainz left them eight points adrift of leaders Borussia Dortmund with only three games remaining.

"Of course it is important for us to be successful," said Heynckes.

"We still have chances in the Champions League and in the DFB-Pokal, and when you have a tie like this, the desire to win titles is decisive.

"I can feel that within the team. We have already shown in the Champions League this year what we are capable of."

Tuesday's match will be an even more special occasion for Heynckes, who led Real to glory in the 1998 Champions League and spent eight years coaching in Spain.

"Of course I know Real Madrid very well, but I have got to say they are even more dangerous and effective this season," he said.

"Spanish football is currently leading the way at the moment. Barcelona are defining a new era.

"It is going to be an interesting match tomorrow [Tuesday] between two sides with a great tradition - between two of the best sides in Europe."

Bayern captain Philipp Lahm, who was rested at the weekend, says he and his team-mates are fully focused on becoming the first side to play in a 'home' Champions League final.

"Bayern are in the semi-finals of the Champions League and we will never lose our hunger for titles," he said.

"The league is history - that is a different story. We still have goals. We probably won't win the Bundesliga, but we are in the semi-finals of the Champions League and in the DFB-Pokal final."

Bastian Schweinsteiger is Heynckes' only doubt since he has yet to reach top condition after two recent injuries.

Real coach Mourinho has called up a full squad of 24 players for the trip to Germany, including the Germany internationals Sami Khedira and Mesut Ozil along with former Borussia Dortmund midfielder Nuri Sahin.

Former Bayern midfielder Hamit Altintop is also part of Real's travelling party as the Primera Division leaders look to keep alive their hopes of a double this season.

Xabi Alonso, who has also been passed fit for the trip, told the Spanish club's sponsors Bwin that scoring in Munich will be the key to reaching the final.

"Playing the first leg away from home, we want to score as this gives you an advantage," he said.

"That is why we will go there to score. We are 100% motivated for it.

"It (reaching the final) would be a major achievement for all of us and we are so determined to make it."

Mourinho claimed on Monday night he had no worries about the intimidating atmosphere his side are likely to face in Munich, and also insisted he had faith in the English referee Howard Webb.

"UEFA handle security very well and I'm sure they'll have firefighters around to put out the hell we may experience in Munich," the Madrid boss said.

"We should only focus on playing the game and Webb on officiating it. Bayern will play from the heart, but they also play good football. They have good players and the match, though tactical, will be good."

He added: "Webb is a solid referee with great experience in this sort of game. We just expect him to do a good job and to make the right decisions. Our players will help in everything they can, but sometimes dubious penalties are awarded and may cost a team a defeat."

Mourinho admitted Bayern will fancy their chances of making the final.

"The greatest praise for a team is to say it plays like a true team, and that's what I think of Bayern Munich," the Portuguese added.

"I think they are a great side with some players who are more special than others, like in all other great teams. Bayern are an excellent side that grew under (former coach Louis) van Gaal some time ago and that plays phenomenal football now under Heynckes. They have the right to believe they'll reach the final."



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