Champions League

Only ourselves to blame - Robben

2015-02-18 10:40
Arjen Robben (File)

Cape Town - Dominant in the first half but scrappy and ineffective in the second, Bayern Munich blamed themselves for failing to score in their 0-0 draw at Shakhtar Donetsk for their Champions League Round of 16 first leg on Tuesday.

The Bavarians had the best scoring chances and allowed only one shot on goal from their opponents but did not make their dominance count, lacking the final pass in front of goal.

"Now it is clear. We have to win in Munich. Nothing else will do," said Dutch winger Arjen Robben.

"We had a good first half and we had our chances. You need to use them when you have them."

"It is a shame because it would have been easier. We did it all ourselves," said Robben.

The German champions were effective in shutting out Shakhtar, playing their first game in two months, and closed the corridors which their opponents repeatedly tried to use for counter-attacks.

Bayern, chasing their sixth European Cup, are still the odds-on favourites to advance against the Ukrainians, forced to play in the western city of Lviv with their home town a hotspot in the military conflict with Russia.

The Bavarians, however, again failed to replicate their form from earlier this season or even Saturday's 8-0 demolition of Hamburg SV in the league and will take on Shakhtar without holding midfielder Xabi Alonso, sent off with a second booking.

His start along with fellow holding midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger had been a contentious issue even before the game with some asking whether the pair needed to be on the pitch or whether the team was more effective with just one of them.

Coach Pep Guardiola's decision to field both proved correct until 25 minutes before the end when the midfielder was dismissed.

Guardiola, looking to win the Champions League in his second season at Bayern, conceded his team was not lethal enough and would need to work harder in the return leg in Munich next month.

"We played for a long time with 10 men and that was difficult," said the Spaniard, who knows the European title is Bayern's big prize this season with the league title well in their sights already.

"We had three or four chances in the first half. We did control the game but then we only carved out few more. Now we have to win the return leg and we will do that."


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