Total commitment, but no reward
Thu, 20/04/23, 09:31
No miracle against Man City: What remains though
The scarves were held high once again in the Südkurve as the FC Bayern players stood in front of them and applauded. They applauded and thanked their fans for the support they had received on Wednesday evening.
Thomas Müller put it aptly: "The stadium showed us after the game that they could see how much we'd invested and how hard we'd fought."
Everyone, whether the players or the supporters in the stands, had given everything in the 1-1 draw in the Champions League quarter-final second leg against Manchester City. On this Wednesday evening, it wasn't enough to pull off a miracle. Ultimately, the 3-0 defeat from the first leg proved to be too much of a burden.
Instructions consistently carried out
"City are the benchmark at the moment, but we had them on the hook twice in two games! Unfortunately, we had absolutely no luck in the game," observed FCB coach Thomas Tuchel.
He had energetically laid down the motto for the hoped-for miracle. His team should get stuck in, act, create momentum and hang in there. A large banner in the Südkurve proclaimed: "Chests out and fight to the end".
FC Bayern had internalised everything and carried out the instructions consistently and with determination.
Bayern found the space, especially time and again on the right with Kingsley Coman, and defended boldly going forward. City wavered. That was impressive.
What was missing, unfortunately, was the reward.
Had Leroy Sané's shot in the 17th minute not missed the target by centimetres, the wave of euphoria that would then have swept through the Allianz Arena could have become a tsunami.
"We really wanted to go in front in the first half. It's really annoying that we didn't get the 1-0. It was also realistic for me that we would score three goals. If you look at both games, it wasn't down to not having the will. We didn't play well for maybe 20 or 30 of the 180 minutes. We weren't the worse team," summarised Joshua Kimmich.
And so City held on in the game as a "breakwater". In the second half, as the game opened up, allowing more counter-attacks, Haaland found the target (57') and the chance of progressing disappeared over the horizon. But Kimmich still managed to grab an equaliser (pen, 83').
Focus on the Bundesliga title
Right now, the disappointment at Bayern's exit might well override everything else, but FC Bayern's journey in the Champions League this season was anything but bad.
CEO Oliver Kahn also underlined the team's good performance: "If you go 1-0 up here, your belief, your self-confidence increases. Then it turns into a tight game. You can say lots of things about the team today, but you can't blame them for anything."
Battled and didn't give up
President Herbert Hainer added: "We can be very satisfied with the team. We battled and didn't give up."
What's left now? FC Bayern remains FC Bayern. One of the world's best clubs with every opportunity and world-class fans. Head held high, chest proud. With the Bundesliga championship, there's still one title up for grabs, and that's where everyone's focus is now.
Tuchel was in combative mood when looking ahead: "On Saturday, we have to go to Mainz and face the next battle. We'll continue to support the team positively, continue to encourage them so that we show the greed, hunger and energy needed to achieve all the goals."
"Only FCB will be German champions," chanted the fans in the Südkurve loudly at the end of the match. A sign that fans and team are standing firmly together at this moment and beyond.
And the Champions League will see us again. Stronger than ever.
Read about the most important moments in our match report: