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Reaction to Thursday’s draw

Van Gaal: It could have been a lot worse

After landing in a section with Roma, Basel and Cluj, the Bayern camp unanimously agreed that this season’s Champions League group is a manageable task. “I’m happy with the draw. It could have been a lot worse,” commented Louis van Gaal. “Some other clubs have been hit a lot harder than us,” echoed Thomas Müller.

However, all the stars and personalities sounded a note of caution. “I’d explicitly warn against taking this group for granted,” admonished Karl-Heinz Rummenigge. “We’ll still need to focus extremely hard if we’re to progress from this group,” emphasised Van Gaal.

Reaction to Thursday’s group stage draw:

Karl-Heinz Rummenigge: “I’d explicitly warn against taking this group for granted. Both Roma and Basel are exceptionally hard to break down. We’ll need to watch ourselves. I’m personally looking forward to the games against Cluij. The coach is a former team-mate of mine from my time with Inter.”

Louis van Gaal: “I’m happy with the draw. It could have been a lot worse. But we’ll still need to focus extremely hard if we’re to progress from this group. We’ve been spared the very long trips by plane.”

Mark van Bommel: “It could certainly have been a lot more difficult, but we’ll still need to concentrate hard in all our matches, because these are three tough opponents. But one thing is clear: Bayern are favourites.”

Philipp Lahm: “Naturally, we’ll be favourites to win this group. I’m specially looking forward to Basel and a reunion with Thorsten Fink. Roma will be very hard work. We don’t yet know a lot about Cluj, but I reckon we ought to make it to the knockout stages.”

Bastian Schweinsteiger: “This is an attractive group. Roma are the most experienced team, and I’m really looking forward to Thorsten Fink and FC Basel. I have lots of memories of their stadium… [Germany] played Turkey and Portugal there at Euro 2008. We should be wary of Cluj, they won away to Roma a couple of seasons ago.”

Thomas Müller: “Some other clubs have been hit a lot harder than us. I’m sure we’ll be totally focused on Roma, Basel and Cluj. Louis van Gaal will make sure of that.”