Thursday, April 26, 2018

Bayern Munich 4-2 Juventus: Bavarians leave it to extra-time to dispatch the Old Lady

Keyplayers in Bayern's win against Juventus / Image via

Key players in Bayern’s win against Juventus / Image via

Bayern Munich welcomed Juventus in the return leg of the UEFA Champions League last-16 tie in what has turned out to be a memorable match between the two European heavyweights.

It has been an eventful night in Munich with the partially repeated screenplay we saw develop in Turin a couple of weeks ago.

Reaching the quarter-finals seemed like a formality for Pep Guardiola’s side as they held to a huge lead from the first game, but the events played out to be much more complicated as the Bavarians were forced to work their way past Juventus after 120 minutes of play.

The Italian champions shot out to a shock 2-0 lead through Paul Pogba and Juan Cuadrado, but Bayern Munich rose back from the dead to level the score in the 90 minutes courtesy of goals from Robert Lewandowski and Thomas Muller sending the game into extra-time.

We didn’t have to wait long for the excitement to start as Juventus managed to stun the home side after only five minutes of play.

Bayern were caught off-guard with some poor defending as the ball was played over the top by Morata for Lichtsteiner. Alaba was unable to track it and clear the danger with the ball cutting back to Pogba who drilled it into an open net after Neuer came off the line.

Much like it was the case with Bayern in Turin, Juventus were very positive on the ball, looking comfortable on the pitch, completely composed and organized in all areas.

The visitors have scored another goal after 23 minutes, but Morata’s effort was disallowed due to an offside position.

It was the sign of the things to come though as the Old Lady doubled their lead after only five minutes thanks to Juan Cuadrado.

Alvaro Morata deserves all the compliments for setting up his teammates with a wonderful scoring opportunity. The Spanish striker used his skills to weave past a number of rivalling players and tee up the Colombian on the right, who pulled a dummy before slotting home past helpless Manuel Neuer.

Thomas Muller for Bayern and Cuadrado for Juventus found themselves in fine opportunities towards the end of the first half, but their efforts were denied by great goalkeeping.

The second interval began with four yellow cards in only five minutes as the tension was rising on the pitch.

Alvaro Morata had an excellent night in Munich, but the Spanish forward was unlucky to get his name on the scoreline. He had two colossal opportunities just two minutes apart from each other but somewhat poor finishing cost him from putting the ball behind Gianluigi Buffon.

It took Bayern Munich more than an hour to recover from the initial shock and get back in the game against defensively organised Italians.

The hosts were forced to try and break the defences through long balls and crosses, mainly through Douglas Costa, whose effort did find the desired target after 73 minutes of play.

Robert Lewandowski jumped high to link with a perfect cross from the Brazilian and plant his close-range header into the top of the net.

A glimmer of hope was all Bayern Munich needed at that moment to keep pushing and going forward to break their rivals.

Once again, just like Juventus in the first leg, Bayern did great to get back into the game. Thomas Muller rose high to meet with Kingsley Coman’s lofted cross into the box and put the ball beyond Buffon to lead the game to extra-time.

Tired and knocked down, the Italian giants could not rise up and get back in the game in the next 30 minutes.

Thiago Alcantara was brought in to freshen up Bayern’s play and Guardiola’s decision to bring former Barcelona man in proved to be the pivotal one as Alcantara scored after 108 minutes to put Bayern shoe-in the quarter-finals.

Kingsley Coman, in all the irony, completely broke the club we was loaned out from as he finished a play two minutes later with a superb individual effort from inside the box. The ball was sent flying into the left side of the goal and there was nothing Gianluigi Buffon could do to stop it.

In the end, a remarkable come-from-behind victory for Bayern Munich who are progressing through to the quarter-finals of the elite club competition.

BAYERN MUNICH: Neuer 6.5 – Lahm 7, Kimmich 7, Benatia 6.5 (Bernat 6), Alaba 7.5 – Alonso 6.5 (Coman 7.5) – Costa 7, Muller 7.5, Vidal 6.5, Ribery 7 (Alcantara 7.5) – Lewandowski 7.

Unused subs: Rafinha, Gotze, Rode, Ulreich.

JUVENTUS: Buffon 6.5 – Lichtsteiner 6, Barzagli 6.5, Bonucci 6.5, Evra 6 – Cuadrado 7 (Pereyra 6), Khedira 6.5 (Sturaro 6), Pogba 7, Alex Sandro 6.5 – Hernanes 6 – Morata 7 ( Mandzukic 6).

Unused subs: Asamoah, Rugani, Zaza, Neto.

REFEREE: Jonas Eriksson

Other results this evening

Barcelona 3-1 Arsenal


Milos Markovic

Formerly a Chief Editor at the largest sports site in Serbia, Milos Markovic is an avid football writer who contributes to a variety of online football magazines - most prominently and His feature articles, editorials, interviews and match analyses have provided informed opinion and views, helping the football aficionados keep up to date on relevant events in world football.



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