Rafael returns from injury to play against Bayern
Manchester United fullback Rafael da Silva has declared he will be back from injury to feature against Bayern Munich in the Champions League. The Brazilian’s return will ease Manchester United’s injury crisis.
Rafael, who was shown the red card in Manchester United’s Champions League exit to Bayern Munich in 2010, has made an early comeback from his injury. However, his return doesn’t guarantee a safe passage to the quarterfinals for Manchester United.
Rafael had to be called off the pitch at half time against Aston Villa as Manchester United cruised to a comfortable 4-1 on Saturday. It was believed Rafael was facing some problems in his thigh, but the Brazil international has made a quick return from injury to meet Bayern Munich at the Old Trafford on Tuesday.
Manchester United manager David Moyes is now hoping for the quick return of his center back Chris Smalling and Jonny Evans. Both defenders have fallen down to injuries and have little chance of appearing against Pep Guardiola’s side, although Moyes is confident of a full defensive line.
Nonetheless, the absence of Patrice Evra has been confirmed. The French left back will be replaced by Alexander Buttner since Evra is facing a suspension. Rafael’s role on the right flank against Bayern Munich’s Franck Ribery will be very important for Manchester United.
“I am OK. My thigh was a little bit tight. We just wanted to make sure I would be OK for Tuesday,” Rafael said.
Rafael remembers how his red card allowed Bayern Munich to proceed to the quarterfinals of the tournament in 2010. The Brazil international admits he blames himself for his team’s exit, but when he steps on the pitch on Tuesday he will be looking for redemption.
Manchester United were 3-1 at Old Trafford and 4-3 in lead on aggregate against Bayern Munich in 2010, but Rafael’s red card turned out to be a big favor for Bayern Munich, who then scored goals to proceed to the next round of the Champions League.
“It's on my mind still. I will never forget that,” Rafael added. “I played so good in the first half but then I got sent off like I did it was good learning for me. It cost United the match. It was a lot of help for Bayern when they play against 10 men. I learned from that.”