Ancelotti confident Ronaldo will be available for Copa del Rey semifinals
Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti expressed his confidence on Tuesday that Cristiano Ronaldo will be able to play in the first leg of the semi final Copa del Rey in which his side entertains Atletico Madrid.
Ronaldo would miss out if the Disciplinary Committee of the Spanish Football Federation decides on Wednesday morning to suspend him for more than three games after being sent off against Athletic Club Bilbao at the weekend.
Ronaldo was sent off for raking his hand down the face of Carlos Gurpegui, but then made disrespectful gestures as he walked off the pitch which is likely to increase his ban.
Nevertheless, Ancelotti is confident his striker will start on Wednesday in the Bernabeu.
"I am certain he is not going to get a serious ban for that. Cristiano will play tomorrow," said Ancelotti, who insisted the striker had not committed that grave an offense.
Ancelotti added that Gareth Bale would be fit for the game, while adding that Atletico, who have won on their last two visits to the Bernabeu, would ensure an intense game with few spaces.
Meanwhile Ancelotti's opposite number, Diego Simeone, travels to the Bernabeu with his side top of the league and said Atletico will; "have the humility to interpret things well, from our chances of winning to the reality of who Real Madrid are."
"They have a good team, but we are competing well," said Simeone.
Wednesday's second semifinal sees FC Barcelona entertain Real Sociedad on the back of their shock home defeat to Valencia at the weekend. That result saw Barca knocked off the top of the league and coach, Tata Martino, admitted failure to improve against Real Sociedad would be worrying.
"When our rivals start to play well, due to some of our errors, some tactical doubts begin to arise which hadn't happened before. We have more space between lines and rival wingers start to give us more problems," said Martino, who nevertheless tried to send a positive message to the fans.
"Who is going to bet on our side if I don't," he said, no doubt aware that Real Sociedad strike duo of Carlos Vela and Antoine Griezman are exactly the type of pace forwards who will cause his team problems on the break.
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