By Oliver Trust
Berlin Darren Collison Pacers Jersey , April 5 (Xinhua) -- Who said a Champions League quarterfinal is easy as pie? Bayern Munich's match in the last eight against Benfica Lisbon was far from easy for several reasons. Is the narrow 1-0 victory in the first leg against the Portuguese now reason to be disappointed or concerned?
After getting off to a perfect start when Arturo Vidal scored in only the second minute (109 seconds to be precise), there is some reason to be concerned. Maybe the start against Benfica was too easy. And not only the 70,000 spectators expected the game to be a stroll but Bayern's team as well. Meaning, Bayern lacked determination and the will to go hard. No doubt, the narrow win that leaves the underdog Portugal still in with a chance of causing an upset in the second leg next week.
The statements heard from all Bayern players, Pep Guardiola and Bayern officials indicate a certain amount of disillusionment. "We had problems controlling the second ball," Bayern coach Pep Guardiola admitted.
And striker Thomas Mueller said: "We could not create as much chances as we wanted to. I missed more esprit."
It did not sound all over satisfied when Bayern keeper Manuel Neuer said: "Sometimes a narrow 1-0 must be enough."
Guardiola's basic idea is to get as many players into their opponent's half as possible, ideal is all ten outfield players to gain as much control of the game as possible, and to be as effective as possible when it comes to winning the second ball. Meaning: When you do have many players in your opponent's half then you can dominate the game well up the pitch. And one's chances of scoring increase.
It is a tactical system that requires three key things: 100 per cent concentration, a high degree of effectiveness and power that cannot be resisted. As for the power, Bayern were unable to create enough chances. Because most of their forwards did not seem to be fully fit as former Bayern coach Ottmar Hitzfeld assumed?
After all Bayern did not manage to deliver the necessary pace despite fast man down the flanks like Ribery and Douglas Costa. They lacked enough ideas to crack Benfica's defense. In order to decide games you have score, and score more than one goal if things are to turn out the way you want.
At first things went well as Arturo Vidal put Bayern 1-0 up and the game was not even two minutes old.
Bayern managed to keep the game under control for over an hour but could not manage to score a second. Sometimes things appeared to be all too easy, meaning, Bayern lacked full concentration and effectiveness in front of Benfica's goal. After a perfect start, the game degenerated more and more into a war of attrition against one of the best defenses in European football.
After the quarterfinal draw had been made, most pundits assumed Bayern had been gifted with the easiest opponent. However during the game it became obvious that Benfica is a team that continually demands you remain alert. But the main problem in Bayern's game was their ineffectiveness when trying to make an assist directly in front of goal.
Thomas Mueller, Douglas Costa, Franck Ribery and Robert Lewandowski all managed to get into the dangerous section of the pitch, meaning near Benfica's goal, but then lacked ideas to finish the job. After Vidal's leading goal Bayern fans missed the last punch.
In the end it was, in most situations, not effective enough. Call it too much art and not enough solid craftsmanship. Benfica was the team most expected, not brilliant, but very solid all the way through. In a week's time Bayern will know if it is enough they have to give to get into the semifinal.
While Bayern and Guardiola are still in the hunt to achieve their big dream of winning the Champions League as a sort of farewell for the Spaniard, rumors are growing in the background about the plans Guardiola's successor Carlo Ancelotti has for the Bayern squad. While Bayern stars like Thomas Mueller, Jerome Boateng, Javier Martinez and David Alaba have extended their contracts until 2021, rumors, mostly from Italy, speak about possible new stars like Pepe (Real Madrid), Jeison Murillo (Inter Milan), Alvaro Morata (Juventus Turin) and Thomas Lemar (AS Monaco).
When it comes to Bayern's best striker, Robert Lewandowski, things don't seem that easy. The Polish striker already has a contract until 2019. Signals from club officials indicate that the Bavarians would like to extend Lewandowski's too as well. But lately Bayern CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge was upset by rumors spread by Lewandowski's advisors who seem to be starting a game of poker as they are fanning rumors that their client might leave. Real Madrid always seems to be on the list of potential Lewandowski takers.
Rumors say Lewandowski is demanding a significant pay raise. "We are sure Robert Lewandowski is happy about his situation in Munich. But one thing is clear: We won't play any games that have been started by someone else," Rummenigge said. His message was meant to be a sort of stop sign for Lewandowski's personal agents.
ISLAMABAD, April 10 (Xinhua) -- Hope for an end to violence has faded in the wake of recent terror attacks allegedly bearing the mark of Pakistani Taliban, analysts said.
The militant group's denial of involvement in the attacks did not help dissipate distrust of their sincereness toward the peace process, they added.
The government had suspended airstrikes against Taliban hideouts in Waziristan tribal region in return for a month-long ceasefire declared by Taliban on March 1 to pave the way for peace talks.
The Taliban leadership extended the truce by ten days after the government freed over a dozen Taliban prisoners as a goodwill gesture, although Taliban blamed the government for lack of progress in direct peace dialogue as the government has not " positively responded" to their demands, including release of all non-combatant pri. Cheap Jerseys From China Cheap Authentic Jerseys Cheap Jerseys China Free Shipping Cheap NHL Jerseys China Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale Wholesale Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys Cheap Baseball Jerseys China Cheap Sports Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys China