Toure out of Champions League semi-final clash - Soccer Ray

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Toure out of Champions League semi-final clash

Manuel Pellegrini confirmed Manchester City will be without Yaya Toure for the first leg of the Champions League semi-final against Real Madrid.

Toure and Manuel Pellegrini

Toure sustained a thigh injury during the closing stages of Saturday's 4-0 Premier League win over Stoke City and the midfielder was absent from Monday's open training session at the City Football Academy.

Speaking at his pre-match news conference, Pellegrini conceded Tuesday's clash with Zinedine Zidane's men was likely to come too soon for the 32-year-old Ivory Coast international, who may also miss next week's return at the Santiago Bernabeu.

"Yaya I think is going to be out. He’s not recovered from the muscle injury," Pellegrini said.

"We'll see during the week in the way he improves. I don't think he will be fit for Sunday [to face Southampton in the Premier League].

"We will see for the second leg but it depends on the way he improves this week."

Toure's absence means Fernadinho and Fernando are likely to reprise the midfield partnership that worked effectively in City's quarter-final triumph over Paris Saint-Germain and Pellegrini has full confidence in the Brazilian duo.

"Whenever Fernandinho and Fernando have played together they have played well, including some key games in Europe against PSG and Roma," Pellegrini added.

“So I am very confident in what they can provide for us."

Real Madrid have fitness worries of their own regarding forward stars Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema but Pellegrini's concerns lie with his own team - who he urged to remain calm under the pressure of a historic occasion for the club.

City are in their first Champions League semi-final and Pellegrini believes a lack of discipline has hindered them in previous tilts for European glory.

Martin Demichelis and Pablo Zabaleta were sent off in the respective home and away legs when Barcelona dismissed the Premier League side in the last-16 in 2013-14.

Fellow defender Gael Clichy endured the same fate 12 months later at the Etihad Stadium as Barca again got rid of City in the first knockout.

"For me the most important lesson came in the round of 16 against Barcelona when we played with one player less," Pellegrini said.

"It is very important to have a hot heart but a cold mind. At this stage it can be a big disadvantage to play with one player less and it is a penalty that can decide the score.

"That's the lesson that we must learn because it was very difficult to manage this team in the last two Champions Leagues - first against Barcelona, which is difficult, then after that, when you play with one player less.

"The most important thing is not to be emotional, or be emotional under control."

1 comment:

  1. Just two matches remaining until the great final of UEFA Champions League, which will be played on San Siro (commonly known The Stadio Giuseppe Meazza), Milan. In the first match, Manchester City will meet on Real Madrid, in an interesting and spectacular match.