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Bayern 5 Aberdeen 1

On-fire Munich ease past outclassed Dons

UEFA Cup favourites Bayern are through to a last sixteen meeting with Brussels outfit RSC Anderlecht after an emphatic 5-1 victory in Munich for a 7-3 aggregate triumph over plucky but ultimately outclassed Aberdeen.

A capacity 66,000 crowd at the Allianz Arena saw centre-back pairing Lucio and Daniel van Buyten net from set pieces to hand the Bundesliga leaders a comfortable half-time lead.

Almost incredibly, Bayern failed to commit a single foul in the first 45 minutes and also hit the woodwork twice, but all the Scots had to show for their efforts was a solitary chance and five bookings.

Result never in doubt

The Dons enjoyed a decent spell as the home team took a breather after the restart, but Lukas Podolski crowned a fine individual display with a quickfire brace twenty minutes from time, before Aberdeen sub Steve Lovell and Bayern’s Mark van Bommel traded goals in the closing stages to round off the scoring.

The men from Munich now progress to a last 16 meeting with Anderlecht, after the serial Belgian champions beat Girondins Bordeaux 3-2 on aggregate in the Round of 32. The first leg in Brussels will be played on 6 March, with the return at the Allianz Arena on 12 March.

Hitzfeld opts for rotation

Eyeing his side’s packed programme in three competitions, and with Franck Ribery and Martin Demichelis still injured, coach Ottmar Hitzfeld chose to rotate his squad and made four changes to the side which beat Hannover 96 last Sunday.

Miro Klose, Ze Roberto, Philipp Lahm and Bastian Schweinsteiger took a rest, allowing Podolski a first start of 2008, with young Toni Kroos on the left, Andreas Ottl in the holding role, and Marcell Jansen at left-back.

Lucio piledriver

Once Polish match official Robert Malek whistled play underway, the home side set off at a cracking pace and Podolski rattled Aberdeen keeper Jamie Langfield’s crossbar from Toni’s chested pass with just two minutes on the clock.

Kroos showed flashes of great intelligence down his flank, and it was from a foul provoked by the youngster that Lucio crashed an indirect free-kick past Langfield to open the scoring on 12 minutes.

Luca Toni came within inches of connecting and Langfield produced a good block to deny Hamit Altintop as the Bavarians threatened to run riot, but the young Scottish side found their bearings and make a real fist of it for a spell, Darren Mackie whistling a drive narrowly wide of Olli Kahn’s far post.

Daniel doubles it

Bayern were roused from their temporary slumbers and Toni, Van Buyten and Ottl all had shots blocked before the Belgian centre-back twisted acrobatically in a good effort for a man of his height, heading Kroos’ fine set-piece delivery past Langfield to double the advantage on 36 minutes.

Lucio stuck out a leg to a deflection and hit the outside of the post as the home team finished the half strongly, but Bayern chose to sit on their lead after the restart and the Dons enjoyed another good spell up to the hour mark.

First leg goalscorer Sone Aluko again caught the eye as the on-loan Birmingham City youth briefly gave Willy Sagnol a torrid time, and Mackie even had the ball in the net only to see the effort ruled out for offside against Lee Miller in the build-up.

Poldi on target

The Dons seemed to have emptied their locker with that brief flurry and Bayern now assumed lazy command. Klose replaced Toni and Jose Sosa came on for Kroos, although the Germany striker and Van Bommel might have done better with clear-cut openings as the visitors’ heads visibly went down.

It was left to Podolski to show how it should be done as the ex-Cologne man hammered a brace in the space of six minutes, brilliantly retrieving a seemingly lost cause from the touchline and setting up Klose for a drive before netting the rebound himself after 71 minutes, and then scoring a rare headed goal from sub Bastian Schweinsteiger’s corner to crown an excellent overall display.

Dons sub Lovell headed a consolation seven minutes from time as the Bavarians permitted a slight blemish on their night’s work, but Van Bommel immediately restored the four-goal margin with a crisp drive into the bottom corner to round off an entertaining evening’s football.

Live match report for by Chris Hamley