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Chance of atonement

Sporting clash ‘comes at just the right time’

The entertainment onboard Bayern’s Lufthansa flight to Lisbon on Tuesday included clips from the weekend defeat to Köln, replaying goals, missed chances, and on and off-field reaction. When the plane touched down in the Portuguese capital three hours later, where the temperature was a pleasant 18 degrees in the shade, the squad had well and truly put snowbound Munich and the weekend reverse behind them.

“It’s a different competition, so we can forget the Bundesliga for a couple of days,” commented Philipp Lahm ahead of the Champions League Round of 16 first leg clash away to Sporting Lisbon on Wednesday (Live in English from 8.30 pm CET on Web Radio). “We can’t change the past. We’re looking to the future now,” declared Michael Rensing in the light of back-to-back league defeats, “it’s a chance to haul ourselves out of this.”

Draw would suffice

“We can put a few things right on Wednesday,” Karl-Heinz Rummenigge said, and Luca Toni was also in fighting mood: “We just need one good game, and the Bayern of old will be back. Sporting are coming at just the right time.” A decent result in Lisbon would not only throw the door to the last eight wide open, “it would be a boost, giving us plenty of energy and confidence for the Bundesliga,” as Rensing put it.