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Reaction to Bayern v Bayer

'We went for it full tilt after the break'

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Saturday’s biggest game of the Bundesliga weekend lived up to its billing for long spells as Bayern secured a tight but ultimately deserved 1-0 victory over fellow Champions League hopefuls Bayer Leverkusen in an attractive, skilful and entertaining encounter. The result means FCB maintain their seven-point lead over VfL Wolfsburg at the top of the standings. “It was an outstanding team performance,” FCB boss Pep Guardiola said afterwards. “I’m pleased because I’m aware of the calibre of the opponents we’ve just played.”

Reaction to Bayern v Bayer

Pep Guardiola: “It was an outstanding team performance. It was very, very tough. After the chance at the start we basically shut them out and that’s very important to us. Our final pass wasn’t good in the first half. Sebastian Rode made sure we went for it full tilt after the break. I’m pleased because I’m aware of the calibre of the opponents we’ve just played.”

Franck Ribéry: “It was an important victory in a very tough match. Leverkusen are a good team. It’s a shame we didn’t score a second goal. My 100th goal is nice for me personally, but most of all it’s important for the team. We still have four games to go this year and we want to win them all.”

Arjen Robben: “You could say it was less spectacular than people thought it would be. Both teams like to get forward and don’t like pulling everyone back. But both teams were very watchful, because they knew there was so much pace and quality on the pitch.”

Rudi Völler (Leverkusen sporting director): “We played very well in the first half and especially the first 30 minutes. We made chances, but unfortunately we didn’t take them. Our pressing game was good. Bayern didn’t have many truly clear-cut openings, but at some point you come under increasing pressure against Bayern. They’re always capable of hurting us.”

Roger Schmidt (Leverkusen coach): “Congratulations to Bayern! I think it was deserved, but we also had the chances to go on and win it. Unfortunately, the opening goal came too early in the second half and that made it very tough for us. Everyone can see Bayern have so much quality. They let the ball do the work and we never came close to their goal again.”

Stefan Kießling (Leverkusen): “We did well in the first half, we were on a par with them and had the better of the chances. We should even have taken the lead. Bayern didn’t create much in the first half. I don’t know what happened in the second half. We didn’t play anywhere near as well. Maybe we were missing the last couple of percent that allow you to do the decisive things.”