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Bayern Munich in box seat against Juventus

Bayern Munich took control of their Champions League quarter final with Juventus with a dominant 2-0 victory at the Allianz Arena.

Goals from David Alaba and Thomas Muller secured the victory for the runaway Budesliga leaders, and the visitors had captain Gianluigi Buffon to thank for keeping the score line down.

The hosts, who are 20 points clear at the top of the German league, got a perfect start to the tie as David Alaba’s deflected shot deceived Gianluigi Buffon and nestled in the bottom left hand corner of the Juventus goal. Andrea Pirlo had given the ball away to Bastian Schweinsteiger inside the Italian half, he found Alaba and the Austrian’s speculative 35 yard drive flicked off Arturo Vidal’s foot which left Buffon scrambling across his goal but the Italian keeper was unable to reach the ball in time.

Juventus, who were unbeaten in their previous nine European fixtures, struggled to get a foot into the game and Manuel Neuer was rarely tested by the visitors; but ironically the departure of the normally influential Toni Kroos sparked the hosts back into life with the introduction of Arjen Robben.

Robben and Franck Ribery then began to terrorise the Juventus defence; the Frenchman first worked way into a dangerous position but could only drag his shot wide of goal before the Dutch winger fired a shot towards goal but a deflection off Leonardo Bonucci saw the ball go wide for a corner.

The Italians were uncharacteristically under-par and they had to rely on Buffon to keep them in the game, Croatian striker Mario Mandzukic got himself in on the act and brought a good save from the Italian keeper.

Despite their domination Bayern were still struggling to find that crucial second goal to give them a cushion heading into the second leg, but just after the hour they got a bit more fortune as Muller finally got the goal everyone inside the Allianz Arena was hoping for.

Luiz Gustavo fired a stringing shot on goal which Buffon was only able to parry to Mandzukic, the Croat looked like he was in an offside position but despite the appeals he quickly rolled the ball to the unmarked Muller and he had the simple task of firing the ball into the empty net.

After weeks of preparation for this all important tie Bayern manager Jupp Heynckes was delighted his plan had come to fruition and put them in a strong position heading into the second leg.

“We were very well prepared for this match,” he told Sky after the match.

“You could see that in our tactics. We attacked them very early and took Pirlo out of the game collectively. The early goal gave us safety and we played amazingly at some points after that.

“I studied Juventus over and over again. We are happy to have won the match against an Italian without conceding.

“We played high-class football. We controlled and dominated the match, and against the Italian champions, I must compliment my team.”

The disappointment was clear to see on the faces of the Juventus players at the final whistle and defender Giorgio Chiellini told Sky Sport Italia that they were caught out by the German side.

“Bayern played at an incredible tempo,” he said.

“We struggled to keep possession when we were trying to build our game from the back.”

“We hoped to earn a better result tonight but there are 90 minutes left; we will have to play with more intensity, like Bayern did today.”

 

Cover image credit: Doha Stadium Plus/Flickr

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