The Bayern Munich coach, Jupp Heynckes, has said that his team have been playing so well this season that he was not even surprised by their 4-0 demolition of Champions League favourites Barcelona.
Bayern have taken 81 from a possible 90 Bundesliga points, long sewing up the title, and Heynckes said that form made him relatively unmoved by one of greatest European performances of recent years.
“We dominated the game,” said Heynckes, “over 90 minutes it was very good for us. We played a very good game. But we have had a very, very high level in the Bundesliga, the Champions League and the German Cup, so it was not a very big surprise for me that we scored four goals. But it was very, very important for me that we scored so many and that we did not concede.
”The main decisive factors were the organisation of the team, the tactical discipline. We did so well defensively, every player was really happy to stay back and there was lots of creativity up front. We have shown that this season already.“
Heynckes predicted that, with enough spaces to attack into, his team can score goals against anyone. ”When you don't concede, that is important and we managed to do that. We can do this and still play to attack, we have a lot of creativity, quality and class going forward. If we have the spaces then we use them and we can beat any opponent.“
The departing veteran manager had done his research on the Spanish side. ”You have got to analyse how an opponent plays, where they run, how they attack. Then find something you can hold against that. And I did that, I had a Powerpoint presentation, you could see all the runs they do. Defensively we were vey strong, we worked very hard. Barcelona couldn't really do anything, they had one and a half chances.“
Barcelona's assistant manager Jordi Roura admitted that it would be ”very difficult“ to get through but denied his players had been particularly poor. ”I think we actually played ok in the first half,“ he said. ”We tried to get the second ball but we played against an opponent who was very physical, very good, and the second goal came at an inconvenient time. Bayern Munich was very, very good, they gave us huge problems but somehow we lacked freshness.“
Lionel Messi, recovering from a muscle injury, did not look fully fit but Roura, who refused to blame the referee after one goal looked offside while Jordi Alba was obstructed by a Bayern player for another, insisted he gave his best. ”We didnt get Messi into the game, he tried very hard, it was a great effort of his to be here. He tried very hard. We can be proud he gave everything he could give but we just couldn't do any more.
“Four-nil is a huge result, there is a lot of catching up to do. I don't think it has ever happened in the the history of the Champions league but we will do our best.”