Kovac: It was a deserved defeat

Read article contents
Increase size

The 2018/19 European campaign is over for FC Bayern after the 3-1 defeat to Liverpool in the Champions League last sixteen return leg. Niko Kovac's men were ambitious but struggled against strong opponents. "They closed us down well. We didn't manage to play calmly and set up Lewandowski," said the coach after the final whistle, before summing up: "It was a deserved defeat today."

Reaction to Bayern v Liverpool

Niko Kovac: "We were up against very, very strong opponents. I'd like to congratulate Liverpool and Jürgen Klopp. They were the better team over the two matches. We kept the contest open until Liverpool's second goal. You saw a set-piece can be decisive in a match like this. They closed us down well. We didn't manage to play calmly and set up Lewandowski, that's why it was a deserved defeat. Our opponents attacked very early and at a high pace. We tried to use our full-backs to attack. We didn't succeed because our opponents did a really good job, whereas we didn't have our best day. Liverpool are a top team. They were finalists last year and are among the top teams in the Premier League. They exposed our limitations."

Hasan Salihamidzic: "We weren't able to build up pressure at any time. We never managed to get our fans completely behind us. We have to congratulate Liverpool, they turned in a very good performance, they were just better. Liverpool were more physical. Usually we have this dominance and possession. We didn't manage today. We never camped out in our opponents' half and never created chances."

Manuel Neuer: "The victory wasn't undeserved today. We lacked punch up front, we didn't create enough chances. Taken altogether the result is okay, even if it hurts. We were highly motivated, we were fired up, the attitude was right. It would have helped to take the lead when it was 1-1. The goal from a set-piece at an awkward moment settled it."

Mats Hummels: "It was a very scrappy game until Liverpool's second goal. There wasn't a lot of action at either end, both teams were very cautious. We struggled to get into the game. Liverpool took their first chance to score the opener, we levelled with our first chance. Liverpool's second was a bit of a blow to our confidence. Liverpool were the better team then. It was all very tight until that goal, even if it wasn't a great match."

Jürgen Klopp (Liverpool coach): "We came here to advance to the next round. There aren't many teams that have eliminated Bayern, they've advanced to the semis or the final quite often in recent years. So it's special, after all, we're still on course. It's incredibly good to lay down a marker like this today, and in a very tough match with a huge amunt of respect, a lot of tactical play, you had to close down a lot of space. Fortunately we did that in the second half."

Related news