x Abu Dhabi, UAE Thursday 20 July 2017

Klinsmann happy with vital draw

The Bayern Munich manager Jurgen Klinsmann felt his side were well worth the point they earned from their 1-1 draw with Fiorentina.

Bayern, in white, had to contend with Fiorentina's in-form Adrian Mutu on Wednesday.
Bayern, in white, had to contend with Fiorentina's in-form Adrian Mutu on Wednesday.

The Bayern Munich manager Jurgen Klinsmann felt his side were well worth the point they earned from their 1-1 draw with Fiorentina in the Champions League on Wednesday night. The top-scorer Tim Borowski was again the saviour for Bayern in Italy as he cancelled out Adrian Mutu's goal.

The draw gave the Bundesliga side a five-point cushion over their opponents, who lie third in Group F, with two pool games remaining. "We expected a Fiorentina side who put us under a lot of pressure and we generally managed to neutralise their game," Klinsmann said. "We did not look bad in the first half. At half-time, we said we had to move up a gear and that we had to look more insistently for the goal. In the second half, you felt it was only a matter of time before we put one in. We controlled the game and moved around well."

With Lyon beating Steaua Bucharest in the other game in the group, Bayern relinquished top spot to the French champions, whom they face in the final group fixture on Dec 10. And Klinsmann's side need only a point against Steaua in their next game to qualify for the last 16. "We came to Florence wanting to get into a good position and that is what we have achieved," the general manager Uli Hoeness said. A win would have given us complete security, but we only need one point from the last two games.

The Lyon coach Claude Puel, on the other hand, warned his side still have work to do to qualify. Lyon travel to Florence to face Fiorentina before hosting Bayern, and Puel admits it is unlikely his team's fate will be decided prior to the game against the Germans. "There is still a long way to go and we're not playing for that first place yet," Puel said. Meanwhile, the Villarreal coach Manuel Pellegrini lamented his side's inability to qualify from Champions League Group E on Wednesday following the 2-2 draw with AaB, but still backed his team to progress in the weeks to come.

The Spanish side twice took the lead through Giuseppe Rossi and Guillermo Franco but found themselves pegged back by replies from Jeppe Curth and Anders Due which earned the Danes only their second point in the group stage. The result leaves Villarreal level on eight points with Manchester United, with the two teams set to meet in Spain on Nov 25. The Juventus coach Claudio Ranieri has warned his side not to relax despite having already qualified for the knock-out stage of the Champions League.

A brace from Alessandro Del Piero on Wednesday earned the Italian giants a 2-0 away win over Real Madrid just two weeks after beating the Spanish champions 2-1 in Turin. Juve lead Group H but Madrid could snatch top spot if the Italians fail to see off Zenit St Petersburg and Bate Borisov in their last two group games. * PA Sport