Mourinho unfazed by Real's Stade Gerland hoodoo

01 November 2011 08:46

Jose Mourinho says Real Madrid will only have victory in mind when they visit Lyon in the Champions League on Wednesday, despite having never previously won at Stade Gerland.

Madrid lost on their first three visits to the stadium without scoring a goal, until a strike from OL old boy Karim Benzema in the last 16 last season set the Spanish giants on the way to a 4-1 aggregate victory.

The success avenged a 2-1 aggregate defeat at Lyon's hands at the same stage of the previous campaign's competition, but Mourinho says there will be no settling of scores on Wednesday.

"That's not how we feel -- we want to win because by winning it'll be almost over, in the sense that we'll be qualified," said the Madrid coach at Tuesday's pre-match press conference.

"Last year we eliminated Lyon for the first time and we'll have to win once again, as we did in the last match against them."

Madrid inflicted a 4-0 loss upon Lyon in their previous outing at the Santiago Bernabeu, which was the French side's heaviest ever defeat in the competition.

It put the current La Liga leaders five points clear of Ajax and Lyon in Group D and means that they will reach the last 16 with victory over Remi Garde's side.

"Tomorrow (Wednesday) is not a knockout match," said Mourinho.

"It's a group phase match and we'll try to secure a good result. Lyon will play with lots of motivation and aggression, which is normal.

"They have four points, they drew against Ajax, and if they don't beat Real but beat Ajax and Dinamo (Zagreb), they'll be qualified.

"Playing a match against Real Madrid is always special, which motivates players in a very special way."

Mourinho will be without in-form Brazilian playmaker Kaka due to injury, as well as full-backs Alvaro Arbeloa and Marcelo and experienced Portuguese centre-back Ricardo Carvalho.

He must also choose between his two strikers, Benzema and Gonzalo Higuain, both of whom have enjoyed fine form in front of goal in recent weeks.

The two have been rotated in Madrid's most recent league games and Mourinho suggested he would persevere with the practice against Lyon.

"With such a build-up of matches, it seems to me that it's good for them and for the team to do this kind of rotation, because they can get worn down mentally and physically," Mourinho said.

"The two are in form. We'll have to make a choice and I'll live with the consequences."

Source: AFP