Fiorentina hope to revive 'spirit' that conquered Anfield

It has been a difficult few months for Fiorentina, to say the least. The Italians, who beat Liverpool twice in the group stages of the Champions League before Christmas, have lost five of their last six games in domestic football while their striker Adrian Mutu has been banned for failing a doping test last month.

Tonight presents an opportunity to turn things around as they travel to Bayern Munich in the last 16 of the Champions League. The Viola are keen to impress. "We want to play a great game," said goalkeeper Sebastien Frey. "We want to leave a mark in Europe. In order to do that, we need to recover the character that we showed in the competition. I think if we find the spirit that we showed in our two games against Liverpool, we can do well."

Last weekend's 2-0 loss at Sampdoria dropped them to 11th in Serie A, seven points behind Juventus in the last European qualifying spot. "It's a delicate time for us," said Frey. "We have struggled and been unlucky. But for this type of game, you don't need any extra motivation. To reach the Champions League last 16 is a bonus, a unique experience for many of my team-mates."

They will be without defender Alessandro Gamberini, who underwent shoulder surgery this week and will be sidelined for three months. Midfielder Mauro Santana is out for three weeks with a muscular injury.

If Arjen Robben gets his way, Fiorentina's miserable run will continue. He is dreaming of a 6-0 Champions League thrashing tonight. In contrast to their rivals, the Bundesliga side go into the first leg at the Allianz Arena on the back of a 12-match winning streak.

"The ideal result is 6-0, but that will probably not happen," Robben said. "But it is clear we have to score and be careful that Fiorentina don't. If we win the first game, Fiorentina have to go for it in the second game."

Franck Ribéry started just his third Bundesliga game of the campaign in the 3-1 win over Borussia Dortmund on Saturday. Robben is glad to have the France winger back, claiming he brings something extra to the side. "It is a lot of fun to play alongside Franck," he said. "Not only for me, also for all the other players. He gives the team something special."

Defender Philipp Lahm believes the team need to improve at the back. "We're not tight enough. We'll be punished for that in the Champions League," Lahm warned.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee