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Young men, bright future

Boss praises ‘mature’ Holger, ‘on-fire’ David

When Holger Badstuber emerged for the second half against Basel in midweek, his face lit up as stadium announcer Stephan Lehmann proclaimed the defender’s 23rd birthday to the euphoric crowd. Holger had already marked his big day in style with an athletic assist to set up Mario Gomez for Bayern's third goal of the night, the one which effectively settled the outcome of the crucial match.

Add to that a clean sheet for the home side, the 7-0 scoreline and a place in the Champions League quarter-finals for the club, and it was no wonder Badstuber was in good spirits when he spoke to the following day. “It was a highly successful birthday," he said, “we scored our goals at exactly the right time, and then we used all the space on offer thanks to our fantastic attacking players." The Basel clash, the centre-half declared, had ended up as a “festival".