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xsw96 Offline



Beiträge: 186

12.04.2018 04:33
"I was not able to function," Letang antworten

LISBON, Portugal -- For Atletico Madrid, the only thing in the way of the greatest season in the clubs 111-year history is crosstown archrival Real Madrid. The Spanish rivals make up the first intracity Champions League final in history, with the match to be played in Lisbon. Real Madrid is the competitions most successful club and bidding to end a 12-year wait for "La Decima" -- its 10th European Cup title. It recently had a 14-year unbeaten run against Atletico in all competitions come to an end last season, when Atletico won the Copa del Rey at Reals Santiago Bernabeu Stadium. Here are five things to know about Saturdays match: INJURY WORRIES: Cristiano Ronaldo is expected to return from injury to play Saturday. Diego Costa is unlikely. Advantage, Real Madrid. Ronaldo has been burdened by leg injuries over the past two months but said Tuesday he would be available to play in his first Champions League final for Madrid. Costa has also endured leg setbacks and, after hobbling off against Barcelona on Saturday, sought treatment from a specialist in Belgrade using horse placenta. Ronaldos return will bolster Madrids already potent attack with Gareth Bale set to start. But striker Karim Benzema appears to be doubtful with a hamstring injury. Madrid centre back Pepe is also a game-time decision. ALONSOS REPLACEMENT: Xabi Alonsos absence deals an important blow to Madrids midfield. The Spain international has been one of Madrid coach Carlo Ancelottis most important players this season, but a yellow card in the semifinal win over Bayern Munich has left him suspended. Either Sami Khedira, Asier Illarramendi or Casamiro is likely to fill the void and take responsibility for opening up Madrids attack and breaking up Atleticos buildups. Illaramendi is the natural successor to Alonso, but he has had a nervy debut season at Madrid. "It will be a very equal match and I imagine the midfield will be determinant in setting up play," Atletico coach Diego Simeone said. VILLA EXPERIENCE: Not only will David Villas goal-scoring prowess make up for Diego Costas absence, but the Spain strikers experience should prove invaluable to an Atletico team short of Champions League experience. Villa is the only regular in the squad who has played in a Champions League final before, scoring in Barcelonas 3-1 triumph over Manchester United at Wembley Stadium in 2011. Costas absence could also bolster Villas hopes of playing for Spain at the World Cup. Madrid can count on more experience as Cristiano Ronaldo won the title while at Manchester United and goalkeeper Iker Casillas was part of Madrids winning teams in 2000 and 02. Madrid can also draw on the experience of assistant coach Zinedine Zidane, who scored an iconic goal in Madrids 2-1 win over Bayer Leverkusen in its last Champions League final appearance. PAISLEYS RECORD: Carlo Ancelotti has been able to get Real Madrid where Jose Mourinho never could, and now the Italian coach is one win away from matching Bob Paisley with his third European Cup. Ancelotti, who also won two European Cups as a player, secured the Champions League at AC Milan in 2003 and 07, leaving him on the verge of matching the former Liverpool managers record number of titles. "Theres no pressure on me, just the joy of living this moment of happiness," Ancelotti said. "A lot of (teams) have to watch this game in front of the TV and were lucky to be able to play it. Ive watched this game on TV a lot of times and I didnt enjoy it." Diego Simeone could become just the third non-European coach to win the trophy. The only other two were also Argentine -- Real Madrids Luis Carniglia in 1958 and 59 and Helenio Herrera of Inter Milan in 1964 and 65. DERBY TIME: Saturdays match represents the most important Madrid derby after 194 league and Spanish Cup games. Madrid has the advantage with 102 victories to Atleticos 46. Atletico only ended a 14-year winless run against Madrid in all competitions last season when it won the Copa del Rey at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium. Atletico has won and drawn the two league encounters since, while Madrid easily won a pair of Copa del Rey matches against Atletico en route to the domestic cup title. The pair have met in the European Cup once before -- in 1959, when Madrid needed a replay to emerge victorious. After the two legs finished 2-2, Madrid won 2-1 in Zaragoza to reach the final. But in one-game cup finals, Atletico -- which can become the seventh team to finish the competition undefeated -- leads the series 4-1. "There are no secrets for this game," Ancelotti said. "The two teams know each other well." 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Taylor Decker Jersey . -- Top-ranked Stacy Lewis birdied the last three holes and five of the final six Thursday for an 8-under 64 and a share of the lead with Mi Jung Hur in the Yokohama Tire LPGA Classic.PITTSBURGH -- Recovering from a stroke, Pittsburgh Penguins defenceman Kris Letang said his doctors have reassured him that hell be play hockey again. When that could happen is unclear. The 26-year-old Letang spoke to the media before the Penguins faced Montreal on Thursday night, the first time he has spoken to reporters since having the stroke on a West Coast trip before the Olympic break. "Im targeting it day-by-day," Letang said. "Im trying to improve every day I come here. I try to exercise the best I can. I see doctors pretty much every week, twice a week to get better. So well go from there." Doctors are treating Letang with blood thinners and he has been doing light exercises without weights. "(Doctors) said being 26 and having a stroke, its actually a small percentage, but the chance that I get back to normal is really high," Letang said. "Well take the decision from there, but for now, were keeping like this. ... Im going day-by-day to get to 100 per cent," Letang said. "I feel like Im trying to make steps and getting closer to coming back at one point." The last month has been particularly difficult for his family. "When you see your mom crying or your wife, any of my family members, its always a tough thing to handle," Letang said. "Everbody is really careful, like I cant even lift the lluggage without them trying to help me out.dddddddddddd Otherwise its just been mentally tough a little bit." Letang said his wife found him on the ground the morning before the team flew to Los Angeles and his mother-in-law, who is a nurse and was also on the trip, took care of him. "I was not able to function," Letang said. "The day before I was totally fine, I was practicing. I woke up and didnt expect that would happen. I went in the car and went to Los Angeles and thought it would clear up but it never did." Letang, from Montreal, has 54 goals and 173 assists in 419 games in eight seasons with the Penguins. He signed a $58 million, eight-year contract extension last summer, but has been plagued by injuries this season, missing 19 games with an elbow infection and a lower-body injury before the stroke. Letangs most recent game was Jan. 27 against Buffalo. After being a Norris Trophy finalist last season, he has 10 goals -- matching a career high -- and 18 assists in 34 games for the Eastern Conference-leading Penguins. "Im not going to say its not a really good season for me," Letang said. "Two of (my injuries) were kind of bad luck, but honestly, if I have the chance to come back this year and play, its going to be great. I want to make sure I forget all about the three-quarters of the season I missed." 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