Real Madrid, Bayern Munich in Semis
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By ROBERT MILLWARD
AP Sports Writer
Real Madrid plays at Bayern Munich on Tuesday in a Champions Cup semifinal that has the look of a title game.
Real Madrid has won the championship eight times and Bayern Munich has won it three times.
Valencia plays at Leeds on Wednesday in the other semifinal of Europe’s most prestigious soccer competition.
Real and Bayern also are three-time runners-up in the Champions Cup. The Spanish power has extended its record of semifinal appearances to 19; Bayern, the Bundesliga champ, is second best at 12.
Running away with the Spanish title yet again, Real won the Champions Cup last season by beating Valencia 3-0 in the first final between teams from the same country.
The defending champion may be without two of its goal scorers from that night when it faces the Germans.
Fernando Morientes is definitely out with a groin injury. English star Steve McManaman strained his ankle during Saturday’s 1-1 tie with Osasuna but hopes to play.
With such stars as Luis Figo, Raul Gonzalez and Roberto Carlos in the lineup, Real has considerable firepower.
Bayern, the only domestic champion left in the Champions Cup, is pleased Brazilian striker Giovane Elber and midfielder Jens Jeremies are ready only 12 days after both underwent emergency knee surgery.
``Fear? No, we’re not afraid of Bayern,″ Real coach Vicente del Bosque said. ``It’s a club which is at our level and has the same ability. It’s going to be very competitive match between two of Europe’s great clubs.
Bayern hasn’t won the title since 1976 when it won its third in a row.
``This is our chance, especially because no one really believes in us,″ coach Ottmar Hitzfeld said.