Bayern remain undefeated since Jupp Heynckes came out of retirement to manage the German Champions for a fourth time as his side overcame a spirited Celtic by a score of 2-1 in Scotland on Tuesday in the Champions League.
Bayern Overcome Celtic’s Spirit
Bayern continue their undefeated run with manager Jupp Heynckes, after securing a spot in the last 16 in the UEFA Champions. Celtic now looked destined for a spot in the Europa League and can take positives from a much improved performance than the one which saw them hammered 3-0 in Munich.
Energy and the Press
Celtic Manager Brendan Rogers, can take many positives from his side’s performance against the Bavarian Club. At the start of both halves, Celtic came out with blistering energy and made life uncomfortable for Bayern’s holding midfielders underneath James Rodriguez. The Scottish Champions, buoyed by the home crowd’s support, made Bayern’s midfield knock the ball around at the halfway line. When in possession, Celtic played surprisingly expansive football, finding outlets through James Forrest or Moussa Dembele out wide. Indeed, Dembele was bright early on and looked threatening. If he was able to run at the Bayern defense with the ball at his feet, he could cause problems. Unfortunately for Celtic, they could only sustain this level of energy for so long. Bayern eventually found their rhythm, with Javier Martinez’s distribution on point throughout the match.
The German heavyweights looked short of ideas in the first half-hour. James Rodriguez filled in for first choice Robert Lewandowski, in an unfamiliar number nine role. Winger Kingsley Coman was lively on the left flank with his acceleration and footwork, but chances were hard to come by. That is, until the aforementioned Coman took advantage of a colossal mix-up between Celtic keeper Craig Gordon and his defenders to give Bayern the lead. Credit to Celtic, as they did not give up. The Hoops continued fighting for possession and breaking on the counter when possible. Their hard work was rewarded when Callum McGregor latched onto a James Forrest pass to slot home from close range. However, the score was not level for long as David Alaba swung a simple cross into the box and Martinez rose above two Celtic defenders to head it past a helpless Gordon, three minutes after the Celtic equalizer. Despite continued pressing and courage from Celtic, the scoreline remained 2-1 and Bayern survived a scare in Scotland.
Positives For Both Sides
In an entertaining match, Rogers can be satisfied with Celtic’s spirit and ability go toe-to-toe with one of Europe’s elite. They will definitely be a formidable opponent in the Europa League. Bayern will not be happy about conceding, but the team found a way to grind out a result without the likes of Thomas Muller and Robert Lewandowski available.
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