Bayern Munich 4-0 Barcelona: Messi and Co overrun as Germans all but seal final berth

first_imgBayern Munich took a massive step towards the Champions League final with an incredible 4-0 thrashing of Barcelona in the first leg of their last-four clash at the Allianz Arena on Tuesday.On the same day that they stunned the football world by capturing Mario Gotze from Bundesliga rivals Borussia Dortmund, the Bavarian giants again reminded everyone that they are a force to be reckoned with by playing the toothless Blaugrana off the pitch.Thomas Muller opened the scoring with a close-range header, and put the second on a plate for Mario Gomez minutes into the second half.Muller would controversially play a role in Arjen Robben’s goal after appearing to foul Jordi Alba off the ball, before tapping in the fourth himself with eight minutes remaining to round off the biggest-ever margin of victory in a Champions League semi-final.Gomez replaced the suspended Mario Mandzukic up front for the hosts, while for the visitors, Marc Bartra partnered Gerard Pique in defence with Carles Puyol and Javier Mascherano injured.Bayern could have been ahead as early as the fourth minute. Robben exchanged passes with Gomez, and it took the outstretched legs of Victor Valdes to deny the Dutch winger from point-blank range. Barca were winning the possession battle, but it was the Bavarian side who controlled the opening exchanges. Javi Martinez’s tumble in the box was correctly ignored by the referee, who was forced into a bigger no-call when Philipp Lahm’s shot struck Pique’s elbow.The Barca defender headed wide at the other end from a corner, but it was an isolated scare from the blunted Catalans, and with 25 minutes on the clock, Bayern made their superiority count.A corner was worked to Robben, whose cross was flicked on by Dante, and Muller was first to the ball, sneaking a header past Valdes at the near post.But Dante had to be alert to prevent a quick response from Barca, poking away Dani Alves’ cross at full stretch from the unmarked Lionel Messi, in a dangerous position where an own-goal could have easily occurred.Gomez then picked up the first yellow card of the game for barging into Messi, and he was quickly followed into the book by Bartra and Martinez for challenges on Muller and Andres Iniesta either side of the interval. But any hopes that Barca had for the half-time break to revitalize them were dashed only four minutes after the restart, when Bayern exposed their soft centre once again to go two goals ahead.Just like the first goal, Robben’s delivery was met by a Bayern head, with Muller guiding the ball towards the goal line, where Gomez was waiting to gleefully bundle the ball home, albeit from an unnoticed offside position.The Bundesliga side were simply dominating, and the match threatened to get ugly very fast for Barca had Muller and Franck Ribery been more accurate when presented with the chance to pick their spot from great shooting positions.But the third goal was always on the cards, and it duly arrived with 17 minutes remaining, albeit in contentious circumstances. Muller’s off-the-ball block on Alba went unheeded, and with the full-back out of the way, Robben curled sublimely into the far corner.And in the 82nd minute, it was 4-0. David Alaba’s overlapping run down the left ended with a low cross into the six-yard area, where Muller was waiting to turn into the back of the net to leave the second leg at Camp Nou as little more than a formality, and finish off an epic 24 hours for Bayern.last_img read more

Anthony Rendon moving closer to debut with Angels

first_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error ALSOJulio Teheran, who arrived to camp late after a bout with the coronavirus, is scheduled for a three-inning outing with the Angels’ reserve squad in Long Beach on Tuesday. After that, he could be ready to join the team, pitching coach Mickey Callaway said. Although he wouldn’t be built up enough for a traditional start, the Angels have extra relievers to cover the difference…Jose Suarez, who would have been a candidate for the rotation if he’d been with the team at the start of the camp, arrived over the weekend and has been playing catch, Callaway said…First base coach Jesus Feliciano has been away from the team for two days, but Maddon said he’s fine. He has been dealing with a personal matter.Related Articles Angels offense breaks out to split doubleheader with Astros Jose Suarez’s rocky start sinks Angels in loss to Astros Angels’ Shohei Ohtani spending downtime working in outfield center_img Angels’ poor pitching spoils an Albert Pujols milestone OAKLAND — Joe Maddon expects Anthony Rendon’s debut with the Angels to come on Tuesday.The Angels’ $245-million, free-agent acquisition was not in the lineup on Monday for the fourth game of the season with his new team because of oblique tightness.He has taken ground balls and batting practice three days in a row, though. Maddon said the Angels considered having him play on Monday, but decided to take the cautious route and wait at least one more day.“I think he will be (ready Tuesday),” Maddon said after Monday’s game. “I talked to him before the game. Bright-eyed. Ready to rock and roll. It was a close call for today but we thought it was prudent to wait one more day. So (barring) any unforeseen circumstances that I’m not aware of, he should be able to play tomorrow.” Angels’ Mike Trout working on his defense, thanks to Twitter last_img read more