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Respectful but confident

Coach: Fiorentina are a very good team

“Only washing machines come with guarantees.” Mark van Bommel raised a hearty laugh at the news conference ahead of Wednesday’s Champions League Round of 16 home leg against Fiorentina (Live in English from 8.30 pm CET on Web Radio), but the FCB captain was being serious. Munich are confident, but respectful of their Italian opponents. “We know we’re on good form, but it can vanish very quickly,” Van Bommel admonished.

Louis van Gaal also issued a stern warning to his players, and refused to be taken in by the visitors’ mid-table position in the Serie A standings, where they are closer to relegation than Europe in 11th spot. “Fiorentina are a very good team, as they’ve shown in the Champions League,” the coach pointed out. The men from Tuscany rattled up five wins on the spin to finish on 15 points, forcing Olympique Lyon into second place and knocking Liverpool out of the competition. “They took more points than we did. I’ll be very, very pleased with a 1-0 win,” Van Gaal stated.