Created on 28-03-2012 at 00:00 AM
Bayern took a giant stride towards the Champions League semi-finals with a fully deserved victory away to a physical but limited Marseille side on Wednesday night. Mario Gomez moved onto 11 goals in Europe this term and Arjen Robben doubled the score in the second half to seal victory in the quarter-final first leg, as the visitors’ superior football overcame the rough stuff dished out by the sporadically dangerous home team.
The 31,683 crowd at Stade Velodrome saw Jupp Heynckes’ men dominate first-half possession and show plenty of assurance on the ball, but Munich struggled to make headway against the energetic and alert home side until Gomez opened the scoring from a flowing move a minute from the break.
OM, yet again raising their game in Europe despite a dismal domestic campaign, battled away and made life very hard for Munich in the second half, but Robben’s beautifully-taken second 20 minutes from time after a glorious exchange of passes with Thomas Müller settled the outcome on the night once and for all.
The result puts the Bundesliga giants firmly in the box seat for next week’s return, as even a narrow defeat on home soil will be enough to see FCB through to the semi-finals and a probable meeting with Real Madrid, 3-0 winners away to minnows APOEL Nicosia a day earlier. Philipp Lahm and Co are next in Bundesliga action on Saturday in the Bavarian derby away to FC Nürnberg, before the decisive second leg against Olympique at the Allianz Arena on Tuesday.