Created on 26-02-2009 at 00:00 AM
During Bayern’s final pre-match training session at the Alvalade stadium in Lisbon, Miroslav Klose took strike partner Luca Toni to one side for what looked like a planning meeting. Gestures were made, tactics discussed, and routes to goal pointed out by hand. Despite the meticulous preparations, Toni struggled in the early stages of Bayern’s Champions League last 16 first leg tie against Sporting Clube.
The Italian, cleared to play after shaking off an Achilles problem, threw his beefy frame into a series of challenges with Sporting centre-halves Anderson Polga and Tonel. The French match official took an apparent dislike to the Bayern man’s physical approach. And when Toni finally found himself with a clear route to goal, Franck Ribéry waved his team-mate out of the way.
The Frenchman rightly felt he should be the man to net, as he had just dribbled fully 40 yards and left two defenders floundering in his wake. With Toni prevented from spoiling the broth, Ribéry nutmegged home keeper Tiago to hand his side the lead three minutes from half-time.