Berlin: Bayern Munich former president Franz Beckenbauer was forced to backtrack on Tuesday for suggesting that Barcelona were going to "provoke and use every trick possible" in Wednesday's Champions League semi-final second leg at the Camp Nou.
Barcelona have their backs to the wall after last week's 4-0 first leg rout in Munich, with Beckenbauer suggesting on Monday that Barca, "with their pride hurt", would resort to dubious tactics against Bayern.
With Barcelona unhappy at Beckenbauer's insinuation, the German football legend issued an apology in a bid to clear the air between the two clubs.
"I'm sorry if my comments were wrongly interpreted," the ex-Bayern captain and coach wrote on his personal website, claiming that all he had intended to say was that Barcelona would be putting pressure on Bayern "but not by any illegal means".
He continued: "I meant to say that the two teams would do everything to make it to the final, nothing more than that. I'm convinced that fair-play will prevail on Wednesday."
This is the second time this month that "the Kaiser" has been forced to issue an apology to a rival team, after he labelled veteran Juventus and Italy goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon a "pensioner" for failing to stop an early goal in their Champions League quarter-final first leg.