Francisco Roman Alarcon knows the match between Real Madrid and their city rivals won’t be an easy walk but it gets more interesting because Atletico Madrid can’t wait to take their pound of flesh.
Diego Simeone’s side has been on the receiving end for too long. They lost to Zinedine Zidane’s men in 2014 and 2016.
Follow Paul Carr @PCarrESPN
Real Madrid and Atlético Madrid will be the first teams to face each other in four straight Champions League knockout stages.
Today’s match between the arch-rivals will be their fourth straight Champions League match in the past four years. Considering their previous losses, Rojiblancos will be full of extra motivation to win.
“I have now been at Real Madrid for four years and we’ve met them in the Champions League in all four of them,” Isco said in an interview with Codere Apuestas as per Marca.
“I hope the result will be like the previous ones.
“They must be keen to beat us because of the two Champions Leagues we won against them.”
Isco said memories of the previous finals — Lisbon and Milan — will forever bring him joy.
Talking about the unbelievable equalizer from Sergio Ramos, the 25-year-old said his heart skips with excitement whenever he thinks of those moments.
“Sergio Ramos’ equaliser in Lisbon still gives me goosebumps,” he revealed. “It was a very important goal and when he scored it we knew we couldn’t lose.
He continued: “The Milan penalty shootout was the tensest moment of my career.
“I would have also taken one had there been a draw after the first five, but the important thing is that my teammates scored them and we could lift the Undecima.”
Isco said he knows what their opponents are thinking but highlights that Los Blancos are ready to win through sweats, blood and tears.
“Atletico are a very difficult team and it’s even more complicated in a two-legged tie,” he said. “They are a very good team and they have shown that.
“They compete well and it’s going to be a very even tie.”
Premier League referee Martin Atkinson has been selected to officiate Tuesday’s Champions League semi-final clash, UEFA have confirmed.
Isco is expected to stay with the Spanish giants until 2022.