Heynckes dampens semi-final talk after Bayern win

Bayern Munich's fans may have greeted their Champions League victory at Marseille by goading holders Barcelona, but coach Jupp Heynckes refused to look beyond next week's quarter-final second leg.

Updated: March 29, 2012 08:34 IST
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Marseille: Bayern Munich's fans may have greeted their Champions League victory at Marseille by goading holders Barcelona, but coach Jupp Heynckes refused to look beyond next week's quarter-final second leg.

Bayern's 2-0 win in the first leg puts them in firm control of the tie and raises the prospect of a semi-final showdown with Real Madrid, who crushed Cypriot side APOEL 3-0 in the first leg of their last-eight tie on Tuesday.

Barcelona could then await the victors in the May 19 final at Bayern's Allianz Arena home, and it was to Pep Guardiola's side that the away fans' thoughts turned as the minutes ticked down at Stade Velodrome on Wednesday.

Heynckes, though, says his team cannot afford to think about anything beyond finishing the job against Marseille in Munich next Tuesday.

"There is a return leg to come first," he said.

"There are 90 more minutes against Marseille first, so we can't talk about the semi-finals yet, let alone potential opponents.

"It's not that I have doubts -- I just respect our opponents. I have a lot of experience in football and I know that these matches are decided over both legs."

Goals in each half from Mario Gomez and Arjen Robben put Bayern in the driving seat, but Heynckes did express irritation at a late yellow card for substitute Bastian Schweinsteiger that rules him out of the return leg.

"I'm happy with this match, as we're playing matches every two or three days at the moment," he said.

"But I wasn't happy with the five yellow cards, particularly the one that Schweinsteiger got. He needs to build up his fitness and he could have played in the second leg."

Bayern enjoyed the lion's share of possession in the first half but Marseille threatened their goal at several set-pieces and looked set to hold out until half-time until Gomez struck in the 44th minute.

As Marseille appealed for a handball against Philipp Lahm, a quick break by the visitors set up Gomez 20 yards from goal and he beat Elinton Andrade with a low strike that squirmed beneath the goalkeeper's grasp.

Andrade, Marseille's third-choice goalkeeper, was chosen to deputise for the suspended Steve Mandanda after Gennaro Bracigliano performed badly in a shock French Cup loss to third-tier Quevilly last week but Didier Deschamps refused to blame the Brazilian.

"You (the media) can make your own analysis," said the Marseille coach.

"Steve is Steve, Andrade is Andrade. I have nothing to blame him for."

Deschamps did, however, criticise referee Carlos Velasco Carballo's failure to award a free-kick for Lahm's handball.

"There was a blatant handball," he said. "And there are five officials. It's regrettable. I don't want to hide behind that, but you saw what happened. And we can't go back."

Bayern have been in rampant form in recent weeks, having scored 22 goals in their previous five games, and they put clear daylight between themselves and their hosts when Robben added a second goal in the 69th minute.

While OM's hopes of reaching the last four have receded sharply, the 2010 French champions also find themselves 13 points outside the Champions League places in Ligue 1.

Deschamps said there was no time for self-pity though, particularly with the second leg coming up so quickly and a French League Cup final against Lyon awaiting on April 14.

"We have matches to play and we haven't lost them yet," he said.

"We won't be fighting for the top three, that's obvious. But there's no need to get excessively fatalistic. We still have things to play for and matches to win. It could also be better, but there are teams worse off than us."

Mandanda will return from suspension for the second leg, but Marseille will be without injured centre-back Souleymane Diawara and Alou Diarra, who picked up a yellow card that means he cannot make the trip to Germany.

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