Bayern Munich's Carlo Ancelotti targets domestic double after UCL exit
Carlo Ancelotti has bemoaned Bayern Munich's luck against Real Madrid, but wants to bounce back with the Bundesliga and DFB Pokal domestic double to ease the pain of the 4-2 extra-time defeat at the Bernabeu.
Bayern, who are eight points clear of RB Leipzig, take on struggling Mainz on Saturday before hosting Borussia Dortmund in the semifinal of the cup on Wednesday.
"Tomorrow we have a big opportunity to show a good reaction," Ancelotti told a prematch news conference. "We need to focus on the Bundesliga and the DFB Pokal, two important competitions for us. We have to try to win the Bundesliga as soon as possible and reach the final of the DFB Pokal.
"I was curious today in training, because I didn't know how the players would be. But the players are in good spirits. They know the importance of the game tomorrow. I have a lot of confidence in the players, even more so after the game in Madrid.
"We are not happy but we still have confidence as we played really well and were really close to reaching the semifinal in a difficult ground like the Bernabeu. We showed good quality, the result wasn't good but we maybe even improved our confidence with this game.
"I spoke to the players right after the game, saying I am really proud of their fantastic character and really honoured to be manager. But today and tomorrow we have to prepare for Mainz, I don't want to analyse what happened in Madrid again.
"The Champions League was important for us but it's unfortunately over. Of course, we are unhappy and sad about our last game, but it's important that we show our quality tomorrow. With the support of our fans we will have a good reaction."
Bayern will make a number of changes from the side beaten by Real because of injury, and Ancelotti confirmed that Jerome Boateng and Javi Martinez will be among the absentees.
"[Mats] Hummels is OK," Ancelotti said. "He trained normally without any problem. I'll leave out Jerome Boateng and Javi Martinez because they still have little problems, but will be ready against Dortmund.
"Every other player has totally recovered with no problems. I will play the best team tomorrow. Every game is important and we are in a good position in both with a good advantage in the Bundesliga.
"We try to do our best until the end of the season. We showed good character, personality and many good performances. The team has a clear identity but, of course, in football only results count. We can consider it a good season if we can win the double, plus the Super Cup in August."
Manuel Neuer is out for the rest of the season after fracturing his left foot in midweek, meaning backup goalkeeper Sven Ulreich will step in, but Ancelotti is not concerned by being without his regular No. 1.
"Ulreich has played well against Augsburg and Dortmund and we have total confidence in him," he said. "Nothing changes. If we want to build up play from the back, he has good quality with his feet too."
Philipp Lahm and Xabi Alonso both played their final action in the Champions League on Tuesday ahead of their retirements at the end of the season, and Ancelotti says their presence will be keenly felt when they leave the club.
"Lahm and Alonso are irreplaceable," Ancelotti said, adding Joshua Kimmich would assume Lahm's role after Bayern's captain retires at the end of the season.
"We are going to try Kimmich as right-back," he said.
Mark Lovell covers Bayern Munich for ESPN FC. Follow him on Twitter: @LovellLowdown.