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Sigh of relief

Champions League win provides timely boost

The crowd hailed the team, the board were smiling, and Louis van Gaal finally had something to celebrate as the preferred version of normality returned to Bayern on Wednesday night. Munich’s victory over Maccabi Haifa and Juventus’s defeat in Bordeaux means FCB can still make the Champions League knockout stages, prompting genuine feelings of relief from all concerned.

“We needed a boost, and winning has given us just that. We’ve earned ourselves another chance in the Champions League,” said Uli Hoeneß after Munich’s first home win in the competition this term. It was also FCB’s first competitive victory in over a month. “It’s a positive development again at last. I’d say there’s a huge sense of relief,” acknowledged youngster Thomas Müller. “There was a totally different atmosphere in training and in the dressing room today, you felt it immediately. There was laughter again,” revealed match-winner Ivica Olic on Thursday.