Bayern Munich too strong for Villarreal

An early Toni Kroos strike set Bayern Munich up for a convincing 2-0 win over Villarreal on Wednesday as they look to assert themselves in the Champions League group of death.

Updated: September 15, 2011 10:46 IST
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Villarreal: An early Toni Kroos strike set Bayern Munich up for a convincing 2-0 win over Villarreal on Wednesday as they look to assert themselves in the Champions League group of death.

With Manchester City and Napoli also in Group A they are all set to be tough matches and no side can afford to drop points.

Bayern got off to the perfect start with Kroos firing home after six minutes and they never looked back in a commanding performance from the Germans.

They had a series of chances in the second half to finish off Villarreal before substitute Rafinha secured the win with 15 minutes left.

It left their veteran coach Jupp Heynckes delighted, following on as it did from the 7-0 hammering of Freiburg last weekend.

"We can all rejoice after this match," said Heynckes, who coached Real Madrid to the 1998 trophy.

"We could of course have wrapped this up earlier. But the Champions League is not the Bundesliga, it is a lot tougher.

"We have a great bunch of players who can be very proud of themselves."

His Villarreal counterpart Juan Carlos Garrido blamed the early goal on deciding the course of the game.

"Coming so quickly it affected us physically, tactically and psychologically. We committed two errors and then they scored straight from it," complained Garrido.

"Bayern were more comfortable in possession and had too much space.

"We tried to get back into the game but then with the second goal there was no way back and we are left with the impression they were a lot better although I do not believe it was the case."

Despite the task ahead, Villarreal knew how important it was to start the group stage well with difficult games ahead but they went behind early on.

Missing his main creative player Borja Valero through suspension, Garrido fielded a solid midfield including the veteran Marcos Senna, and aimed to attack using the pace of Nilmar and Giuseppe Rossi.

However his plan to be defensively strong did not last more than a few minutes as Bayern's potent attack put them ahead. Franck Ribery found Kroos, who was given far too much space in the heart of the Villarreal penalty area, and he finished clinically.

The home side tried to respond and their forwards certainly looked like they had the beating of Bayern defenders Holger Badstuber and Daniel Van Buyten, but they saw little of the ball as the Germans enjoyed the majority of the possession in midfield.

Bastian Schweinsteiger had a powerful shot from distance which was blocked by keeper David Lopez, while Ribery was the main threat, making it a tough evening for full back Mario Gaspar.

Rossi had Villarreal's best chance of the first half when he got goal side of Van Buyten but with the ball at a difficult height, he shot straight at Manuel Neuer. Shortly after Van Buyten limped off and was replaced by Rafinha, who at least offered them greater speed at the back.

After the break Bayern substitute Nils Petersen made an immediate impact but was twice denied by Lopez in the Villarreal goal, the second time he just had the keeper to beat.

The game lost its earlier rhythm but while the game was scrappy, Bayern were enjoying better openings and Lopez continued to come to Villarreal's rescue. Schweinsteiger and Peterson had further shots saved after being given plenty of time on the edge of the box.

With Bayern peppering the Villarreal goal it appeared only a matter of time before they scored again and it came eventually from Rafinha, with Lopez for once, at fault as he was beaten at his near post.

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