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Van Gaal’s thoughts:

‘We coped better than Fiorentina’

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On the whole, the Bayern camp was delighted at making the Champions League quarter-finals for the second season in a row, but Louis van Gaal was not entirely happy in the aftermath of the 3-2 defeat to Fiorentina, as the Dutchman would rather have ended up on the winning side. “I’m a coach, so I always want to win, but yesterday we lost,” Van Gaal said prior to Wednesday’s return flight from Tuscany to Munich.

Q&A with Louis Van Gaal:

Question: Congratulations on making the next round. You must have been a happy man at the post-match banquet...
Van Gaal: “Getting through was the vital thing, but I’m a coach, so I always want to win. Yesterday we lost.”

Question: Can a coach sleep the night after such a nerve-shredding match?
Van Gaal: “I can always sleep.”

Question: So you can just switch off, even after a game like that?
Van Gaal: “I wouldn’t be able to if I’d made mistakes, and I do make mistakes. But I always sleep well if I don’t believe I made any mistakes.”

Question: How would you rate your team’s performance?
Van Gaal: “I think we played very well yesterday, especially given the conditions. It was hard work, but I reckon we coped better than Fiorentina. But they scored their goals, even if we made the individual mistakes, and one was offside, the second goal to be precise. Fiorentina were upset about the first leg and I can understand that, but not any more, because they’ve scored an offside goal as well.”

Question: 17-year-old David Alaba gave a terrific display. Were you expecting him to remain so calm and collected?
Van Gaal: “I think it’s normal, once I believe a player’s ready for a particular match. I’ve done it often enough in the past. I put Seedorf in my first team when he was 16.”

Question: Is making the next round a boost for your forthcoming matches?
Van Gaal: “I don’t know, because I’m still thinking about a defeat. I don’t think we’ll lose very often, but yesterday was a decisive match, and we have to win the decisive matches. But we failed. I’m not entirely convinced it’ll give us a boost.”

Question: But it could be important in terms of developing the team.
Van Gaal: “I thought that too: we lost, but it could help our development. We’ve had to make changes every week. Robben was sick, Ribéry was injured. Now it’s Contento and I’ve had to pick a 17-year-old, so it disturbs our rhythm. But we’ve played well and scored two wonderful goals from open play, which I think is important. We can review the game positively.”