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‘It won’t be easy’

FCB focused on victory at Anderlecht

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On Tuesday FC Bayern set out for a Champions League away game for the final time this year. The destination was Brussels, where the men from Munich will meet Belgian champions Anderlecht on Wednesday (Live in English from 20.45 CET on free Web Radio and our Ticker). Jupp Heynckes’ team enjoyed a relaxed journey, because second spot and a place in the knockout stage is already guaranteed for FCB.

 “There are important UEFA ranking points up for grabs. That’s why we still really want to win,” explained chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge before departure, also emphasising the team’s desire to stay on form after eight successive victories. “It’s a Champions League game. It’s always special to play in the Champions League,” said Heynckes at the pre-match press conference on Tuesday evening at the Constant Vanden Stock Stadium.

Strong Physical Opponents

Bayern also want to keep alive their chances of finishing top of the group. The final group stage fixture is a matchup with current leaders PSG. Nobody is expecting the French team to slip up at home to Celtic on Wednesday. “PSG seem very stable, they’ll score goals against Celtic. We’re concentrating on ourselves and want to keep playing well,” added Rummenigge.

As a result Bayern are only thinking about Anderlecht. “You can’t underestimate any opponents, especially not in the Champions League. I watched their game against Bruges and the team really impressed me. Not just the technical aspects of their play, but also their physicality and their running. The new coach has stabilised the defence. It won’t be an easy game,” warned Heynckes, unmoved by Anderlecht’s CL record so far: the Belgians are currently without a point or goal at the bottom of Group B.

Boateng fit – Coman doubtful

The coach will make a few changes to the team that defeated Augsburg at the weekend. “Jérôme Boateng is available and will start the match. Sebastian Rudy and Corentin Tolisso will also start,” Heynckes revealed. There is still a question mark over Kingsley Coman. “He’s just been doing work in the gym these past few days and we’ll see how he he’s doing at the final training session. If everything’s OK, he’ll be in the starting line-up.”

The 72-year-old is without injured duo Manuel Neuer and Franck Ribéry, Thomas Müller (training deficit), David Alaba (back) and Rafinha (ankle), who have all stayed in Munich. These absences are no cause for concern for Heynckes: “We want to win the game tomorrow and extend our winning streak!” Bayern are ready to go in their last Champions League away game of 2017.