Xabi Alonso has said he hopes Cristiano Ronaldo is fit to line-up tonight for Real Madrid’s Champions League semi-final with Bayern Munich.
Madrid host the first-leg against the champions and Ronaldo has missed Los Blancos’ last four games, but it is thought he will feature against Bayern.
Alonso has told a pre-match Press conference that the Portugal international is as important to the team as ever.
“Cristiano will play if he is 100%. It’s up to the Coach, the player and the medical staff,” Alonso said.
“We need him to play. He’s a very important player.
“He gives us explosiveness, the potential to create chances, and he scores goals.
“Cristiano is a key player for us and he takes advantage of opportunities. We saw the other day in the Cup final how hard it is without him.”
Gareth Bale scored the goal that eventually delivered the Copa del Rey to Madrid and Alonso was fulsome in his praise for the Welshman.
“Regardless of the goal, Gareth is highly valued by everyone,” Alonso said.
“He’s had to adapt to a new country and a new League and he’s been important. Hopefully he can be so again. We’re happy with his performances.”
It has been suggested that Pep Guardiola has targeted Alonso as one of Madrid’s danger men, along with Ronaldo, but Alonso says it won’t change his approach.
“It’s neither one thing nor the other. I will play my game the same way,” the midfielder insisted.
“People have always tried to change my game one way or another but it doesn’t change how I think.”
Alonso also called on the Santiago Bernabeu crowd to produce an occasion to inspire the players to victory.
“I remember a League match, or last year against Borussia Dortmund,” he said when recalling atmospheres that most influenced him.
“When we saw so many people it was an important boost to morale. We will see on the pitch and we have to show that desire, the spirit of sacrifice and know what it’s like to suffer.
“These types of matches, with support, noise and drive from the stands are a bonus for us.”