Matthijs de Ligt celebrates his match-winning goal against Freiburg.

Bayern put cup exit behind them ahead of Man City tie

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We wanted an answer, and we got it. The midweek DFB Cup exit to Freiburg still hurts, but Matthijs de Ligt's stunning matchwinner against the Black Forest club on Bundesliga Matchday 27 has helped to heal old wounds.

The Dutchman fired home from 28 yards to seal a 1-0 triumph that keeps FC Bayern top of the Bundesliga, ahead of Tuesday's trip to Manchester City in the Champions League.

'An unbelievable feeling'

"Oh, yeah - it was very important," commented de Ligt, before discussing his decisive goal. "I saw the space and had a crack. It was an unbelievable feeling. I've scored against Mark Flekken in training for the national team, so thought I'd give it a go."

It's not only the quality of de Ligt's third Bundesliga goal that got people talking. The 23-year-old also found a man with 93 percent of his attempted passes in another all-round display befitting his new-found standing as Bayern's defensive rock.

Pressure? What pressure?

Equally as impressive was Bayern's ability to deliver in pressure-cooker conditions and carve out chances that, on another day, might have resulted in three or four goals. Leroy Sané, Sadio Mané and Serge Gnabry all missed their mark, but the fact they were in such presentable goal-scoring positions to start with is an achievement in itself against such a well-drilled Freiburg team.

"We were switched on, diligent, and defended the counters well. You need that when the fluency is missing in attack." said Bayern head coach Thomas Tuchel. "I was happy with everyone. It's not enough just to win the tactical and technical battles here in Freiburg - you need something extra."

Tuchel, FC Bayern, SC Freiburg
Thomas Tuchel praised a 'very good team performance' in Freiburg.

De Ligt's goal will take the headlines, but a world-class intervention from Yann Sommer in the 71st minute ensured Bayern took the spoils. Diving to his left, the Swiss custodian somehow managed to keep out Roland Sallai's deflected shot with his trailing right leg. "We were full of running and, overall, did a good job," he commented after the game.

Man City next up on Tuesday

For Sommer and Co. the focus now turns to Tuesday's Champions League quarter-final first leg against Pep Guardiola's Man City. "I'm really looking forward to a game between two top sides," he enthused. "Our objective is clear: we want to progress. To do that, we need two very good performances."

Yann Sommer, FC Bayern, SC Freiburg
Yann Sommer and Bayern are ready to face Man City on Tuesday.

Bayern have three days to fine-tune. "It's imporant to recuperate. We have a few players carrying knocks, and hope they'll all be back," explained Tuchel. "It'll be a different game, a different assignment. We'll go there with courage and knowing that we need an absolutely top performance. We need to put absolutely everything we have into it, be smart and find the right tactical solutions. We'll be ready."

And we'll be with you every step of the way!

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