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Lahm excited for ´football party´ with Barcelona

SoccerNews in La Liga 22 Apr 2013

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Bayern Munich captain Phillipp Lahm is excited for a “football party” in the UEFA Champions League semi-final clash with Barcelona at the Allianz Arena.

After beating Juventus in the quarter-finals the German champions were drawn with the Catalan giants and Lahm insists he and his team-mates are ready for one of the biggest games of their season.

“We’re really looking forward to it,” he told reporters.

“It’s going to be a football party, therefore we’re really looking forward to the match.

“It’s the semi-final of the Champions League, if you got this far you definitely want to reach the final but it’s going to be a very difficult task.

“Not only the players are looking forward to this match, every football fan is looking forward to it.”

The two sides will meet for the first time in three years and Lahm believes Barcelona are still the team to catch in Europe.

“It’s an absolute top match against Barcelona,” he added.

“If you look at the last years you see that Barcelona has always been the team to beat. They’ve always been in the semi-finals in the last years and they won it twice in the recent past.

“Barca is an absolute top team.”

The full-back is pleased to see his side showing the consistency required to be considered one of Europe’s elite like their opponents.

“We developed very well and have been in the final twice in the last four years,” he said.

“Now we’re in the semis again and that’s the development we desired.”

Lahm’s team mate Javi Martinez also spoke of his excitement ahead of the game, but warned that the Germans must be wary of Barca’s entire attack, not just star striker Lionel Messi.

“I am looking forward to the game,” he told reporters. “It’s my first Champions League semi-final and the motivation is huge.

“We have to stay loyal to our style. We need to maintain a tight shape and play as a team.

“Everybody is looking forward to the game. I have faced Barcelona a couple of times and often tasted defeat. But now I am at a different club and we will not play for the draw tomorrow.

“Messi is the best in the world but Barcelona are not just about Messi. They have quality players all over the pitch.”

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