Bayern’s Robert Lewandowski: Real Madrid not a one-man team

Relive Bayern’s journey to the last four and a seventh UCL semifinal meeting against Real Madrid.
ESPN’s Alison Bender previews the Champions League semi-final matches where Liverpool take on AS Roma and Real Madrid face Bayern Munich.
Robert Lewandowski’s 150th career goal in all comps for Bayern punctuated a straightforward 3-0 victory over Hannover at the HDI-Arena.

Robert Lewandowski insists Real Madrid are not a one-man team as Bayern Munich prepare for a Champions League semifinal showdown against familiar foe Cristiano Ronaldo.

Real forward Ronaldo, the competition’s all-time leading goalscorer with 120, has scored nine times in six European meetings with the Bundesliga champions, including five in last season’s two-legged quarterfinal.

Bayern’s 39-goal top-scorer Lewandowski knows his team must shackle the Portugal forward in order to be successful this year, but also believes the Spanish club pose plenty of other threats.

Ahead of Wednesday’s first leg at the Allianz Arena, the 29-year-old striker told FC Bayern TV: “We know Ronaldo has already scored quite a few goals against Bayern. I hope he won’t add to it this year.

“But the main thing is the whole team’s performance, not only Cristiano Ronaldo’s. We know their other players are really good and able to score too. We have to watch every player.

“But if we stick to our game and live up to our full potential, Real Madrid might have problems too. It’s the Champions League, you have to watch every little detail and try to play as best you can.”

Robert Lewandowski.

Ronaldo, who has inspired Real to success in the competition in three of the last four years, is aiming to lift the trophy for the third successive season.

The Spanish club knocked out five-time winners Bayern in the last eight last campaign, edging a dramatic encounter 6-3 on aggregate after extra-time.

Despite that agonising defeat, Poland international Lewandowski, who has registered 45 Champions League goals in his career, says Bayern are not motivated by revenge.

“It’s another season altogether, another year,” he added. “What happened last year is history. We know every match is different, just as every season is different. When we take on Real Madrid now it’ll be completely different from last year. What happened last year isn’t on our minds.

Sure, two matches against Real Madrid, semi-finals, big matches, but we’re in a different position compared to last year. We know we can make it against Real Madrid too, even if they’re top opponents. It’ll be a tough match. I hope it’ll be an interesting match too and that at the end of the day we’ll be happier than them.”

Bayern coach Jupp Heynckes appears to have no fresh selection concerns for the midweek game as long-term absentees Manuel Neuer, Arturo Vidal and Kingsley Coman were the only players to miss training on Monday.

The German side, who have already secured a sixth successive league title, travel to the Spanish capital for the second leg next Tuesday.

Winners of the tie will face Roma or Liverpool in the Kiev final on May 26.