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Concern over Martínez

FCB still ‘nowhere near 100 percent’

Bayern's trip to Dortmund for the first competitive fixture of the season did not go according to plan: the champions failed to reclaim the German Supercup,  and Javi Martínez sustained a potentially serious injury. “We're still deep in pre-season and nowhere near 100 percent,” commented Philipp Lahm after the 2–0 reverse against BVB. The club captain, Manuel Neuer, Jerôme Boateng, Thomas Müller, Dante and Mario Götze had all completed a mere four training sessions since returning from vacation, but all were obliged to feature in the prestigious encounter.

“It was obvious we’ve only had a few sessions together,” commented Müller, whose team made a brisk start in front of a sell-out 80,667 crowd at Signal Iduna Park, with Xherdan Shaqiri going close after three minutes. “We had a couple of good spells,” agreed David Alaba, “but it wasn't enough. Everyone could see what happens when we're missing a few players.”

To make matters worse, the home side had a good day. “It's not easy in Dortmund,” reflected Pep Guardiola, who felt his young team had “done well for the first 15 minutes,” but had “a few problems” as the game wore on. “Dortmund were alert, aggressive, put us under pressure high up the field and came at us over and over again,” analysed Neuer, who said he had been “determined to play” and looked rock solid throughout the game, although he was powerless to prevent Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s 23rd-minute opener.

“Basically we knew what to expect,” said Sebastian Rode after his competitive debut for Bayern, “but we occasionally lacked composure and our build-up play was imprecise.” That ultimately meant “we created hardly any clear-cut chances,” as Neuer lamented. The best fell to Robert Lewandowski a minute after half-time, but the striker was denied and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang wrapped it up with the home team's second just after the hour.

‘Thoughts are with Javi'

“That was tough,” acknowledged Lewandowski after returning to his former club for the first time, “we weren't particularly good in attack. We need to keep working hard.” Müller could only agree: “Our attacking game never got going.” In any case, Dortmund have never done FCB any favours in the past, “and you have to work exceptionally hard for victory here.”

The defeat naturally hurts, but nowhere near as much as the loss of Martínez, who turned a knee in a collision with Marcel Schmelzer. “That's the worst news today,” said Guardiola, “I think he'll be out for a long time.” The squad's thoughts are with Javi, revealed Rode, a sentiment also voiced by Lahm: “He's been back in training for quite a while so it'll be even more devastating if it's a serious injury.”

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