Angel di Maria is optimistic that Real Madrid will be an improved outfit when they face Borussia Dortmund for a second time this season.
Madrid face up to the German outfit this Wednesday evening in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final, on from having lost and drawn to Dortmund during the group stages of the competition.
For their attacking winger, Los Blancos go into this latest meeting an improved team compared with earlier in the year.
“When we played the first couple of matches we were not as good as we are now. Things are going much better, the defence is more compact and we have the extra confidence to do very well in the tie,” enthused Di Maria to Madrid’s official website today.
“We know that Borussia are a very similar team to ours, with a very strong counterattack, but every time we play away from home in Europe we score.
“We know about, and we have suffered at the hands of, their goals on the counter. They are a very similar team to us, with a very strong counterattack, and they are also on a good run of form.
“We have to do things at 100 per cent to get through the tie.”
The Argentine was asked of the different playing styles between the Spanish and Germans.
“I have not played in the Bundesliga but I know is that it is strong and very competitive. I've played in La Liga and I think that it is one of the best leagues in Europe.
“Spanish football is a little more technical and creative, while the German league is a little more about strength and courage.”
Madrid see preparations for the semi-final surrounded by talk of the team’s chances of capturing ‘La Decima’, the club’s 10th European Cup.
“It is obvious that one dreams of playing in the final, but we know we have to go bit by bit. We have two very important matches against Borussia Dortmund and we know it will not be easy.
“We struggled in the group stage and I believe that it will be the same this time.”