Quarter-final, second leg – Kick-off: 20-45 (CET)
First leg: Bayern Munich 2-1 Manchester United
:Sir Alex Ferguson is confident Manchester United will cope with the absence of Wayne Rooney when they take on Bayern Munich in the second leg of their Champions League quarter-final on Wednesday.
United are expected to be without their talismanic striker following the ankle injury he picked up during the closing stages of the 2-1 defeat to Bayern eight days ago.
“Wayne won’t make it,” confirmed Ferguson. “I’m not prepared to take a risk with a player who isn’t 100% fit. I don’t think he will be on the bench although he might talk me into it, it’s a difficult one.
“We have had two bad results [against Bayern and Chelsea]. You have to recover and we can do that with a good team performance. The opportunity of playing at Old Trafford knowing you need a goal to take control is a great incentive. We turned it around against Roma a few years ago after being down in the first leg … a once-in-a-lifetime performance. I think that Roma side are probably equal to this Bayern side in terms of ability.
“I have a great respect for Louis van Gaal. His teams always play football and they are also technically developed. Franck Ribéry and Arjen Robben are great, talented players, but we can’t worry too much about their threat without thinking first about our own threat. The away goal we got in Germany could make a difference. As for the result, I’ll be happy at 1-0.
Meanwhile, Bayern coach Louis van Gaal believes his side are strong enough to defend a 2-1 lead at Old Trafford.
“Naturally, we have a lot of self-belief,” he said. “But we know Manchester United are a top team. Are they favourites? Yes. They have lots of experience of winning games at home and we know what they can do. They got an away goal and we have quite a young team, but we have a chance. We expect the atmosphere will be super; it’s always the same in England. It’s also a sporting atmosphere which I find fantastic.
“I am jealous of the structure that Manchester United have in their defence and throughout their team in general. Yes, they have conceded some single goals, but then they have scored three or four.
“They have players who can decide a game, that’s what makes the difference. But we also have players who can make that difference. We have played without Franck Ribéry for most of this season and we have done well. If Manchester United play without Wayne Rooney, they will still be very strong.”
Van Gaal hopes to welcome Robben back from injury, although Daniel Van Buyten remains a concern.