Bayern Munich leave room for improvement despite Champions League victory over Valencia


Bayern Munich will need significant improvement if they are to stage another successful run in the Champions League after their Group F opening 2-1 victory over Valencia last night.

Coach Jupp Heynckes and his players were happy to banish the nightmares of losing last season's final to Chelsea in Munich but agreed their display against the Spanish team was far from their best.

"There is still room for improvement for the entire team," said Heynckes after watching his players dominate the Spanish side throughout but failing to shut out the game early on.

A first half goal by Bastian Schweinsteiger created only a fragile lead and did little to hide sloppy defending and less-than-clinical finish up front.

With Valencia huddled in their own half, the Germans should have added several more goals but failed to convert a string of chances.

Toni Kroos did eventually add another for the hosts late in the game but a concentration lapse saw them concede a goal in stoppage time.

Nelson Valdez was almost unchallenged when he rose at the heart of the Bayern defence above two players to head in. Had he scored earlier, it could have turned out to be a very jittery game for the Germans.

Bayern then were awarded a stoppage time penalty for a foul on Arjen Robben but again they fumbled with Mario Mandzukic driving a weak spot kick into the arms of the Valencia keeper.

"The final phase of the game was unsatisfactory. When you lead 2-0 you cannot let your guard down and it is equally annoying that we do not take full advantage of the penalty," said Heynckes.

With their top striker Mario Gomez, who notched 12 goals in the Champions League last season, and sensational midfielder David Alaba still injured and wingers Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery only back from minor injuries, Bayern can expect to grow stronger as the competition continues.

Maintaining control of the Bundesliga which they lead with maximum points from three games will be equally confidence-boosting for the Bavarians, who have domestically played second fiddle to champions Borussia Dortmund in the past two seasons.

"The goal we let in was unnecessary and we should have scored a second goal much earlier," said captain Philipp Lahm. "But at the end of the day we took three points and it was a good start against the toughest opponent in the group."

Bayern top Group F along with BATE Borisov who stunned hosts Lille 3-1 in their opener on Wednesday.

"This is a new season and a new chance for us and we start again from scratch," said Arjen Robben. "Everyone is motivated and hungry for success. We can start building on this 2-1 win."


Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

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

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before