Bayern Munich took with them two vital away goals but were made to work hard by Sevilla in their 2-1 win at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium on Tuesday.
Bayern Munich went a goal down against Sevilla but salvaged a 2-1 away win in the 1st leg of their Champions League quarter-finals, albeit largely due to Sevilla’s unfortunate defensive errors.
Javi Martinez and Mats Hummels provided monstrous defensive performances, but the ageless Franck Ribery put in a masterful performance in the attack which helped the Bavarians get two vital away goals. Sevilla were the team that took the lead through Pablo Sarabia, and his well-taken shot went past Sven Ulreich.
But, an unfortunate own goal from Jesus Navas and a deflected effort from Thiago Alcantara gave Bayern a vital away win, which will help them defend their lead at the Allianz Arena when Sevilla come visiting for the second-leg. The Hard Tackle now runs the rule over Jupp Heynckes’ men.
Sven Ulreich – 7
Sevilla had seven shots on target against Bayern and Ulreich was on hand to make some excellent stops, even as the Andalusians did well to attack the Bavarians. Could have done little to stop Sarabia’s effort on goal. Thus, he has proven to be a top notch deputy for the injured Manuel Neuer.
Joshua Kimmich – 7
Kimmich has, this season, proven himself an able replacement for the legendary Philipp Lahm and put in another impressive shift against Sevilla. He was sound in defence and able to contribute wisely to attacks whenever called upon. Nothing spectacular, but did enough to contain Sevilla’s pacy attackers on his side and from set-pieces.
Jerome Boateng – 7
Boateng put in another solid performance, one that helped Bayern fend off Sevilla’s attackers. Bayern did concede the first goal of the game, but overall Boateng was good in central defence alongside his partner, Hummels.
Mats Hummels – 8
Hummels did his best to nullify any dangerous Sevilla attacks, although the team did concede seven shots on target as well as a goal. Hummels’ positioning and understanding of partner, Boateng helped him impose himself on the game. A colossal performance from the German in defence.
Juan Bernat – 5
Bayern’s weak link on the night. The backup left back was the reason Sevilla scored the opening goal as his blunder allowed Sarabia inside the box to score. Did make amends with some sound defending at times but was overall weak.
Javi Martinez – 8
A performance like Tuesday’s warrants a place in the Spanish National squad. Martinez made several crucial interceptions and a tremendous last-ditch tackle which prevented Sevilla from scoring from a dangerous position. He was an imposing figure in the middle and also forced a good save with a brilliant shot.
Arturo Vidal – 5
Vidal, only in the team after passing a late fitness test, was subbed off after 35 minutes to be replaced by James Rodriguez after a relapse of his injury. During his time on the pitch, he showed precisely why he was selected, going into tackles and preventing several Sevilla attacks.
Thiago Alcantara – 8
Thiago put in an excellent performance. While he should be thankful for the significant deflection that led to his goal, it was the player’s desire that made the match-winning effort. He was quiet on the creative front in the first half, but was active in the second, continually threatening Sevilla’s defence.
Thomas Muller – 5.5
Muller has, over the years, been one of Bayern’s chief attackers, and when he underperforms, it shows on the overall team performance. Such was the case against Sevilla, although he tried hard to have an effect on the game. Could be one reason why Bayern did not look like their usual efficient best in attack.
Franck Ribery – 8.5
Ribery has been turning the clock back this season, and Tuesday was more of the same. The ageless Frenchman put in an excellent performance to kill the game off. Always kept Jesus Navas on his toes and in the end forced the Spaniard into a mistake. He then provided the brilliant cross which Thiago headed in for Bayern’s winner.
Robert Lewandowski – 5.5
Lewandowski looked shorn of his usual dominance as a striker. Had a minimal effect on the game, just like Muller, but that could also be attributed to the lack of service he received. Lucky enough that Bayern won or could have come in for criticism.
James Rodriguez – 7.5
James changed the course of the game upon his introduction creating numerous chances for his team-mates to put Sevilla on the back-foot. His first touch of the match led to Bayern scoring their equaliser, and overall, he changed the German side’s attacking dynamics.
Rafinha – 6.5
Rafinha was sent to replace the disastrous Juan Bernat and immediately tightened things on his side of the defence. From then on, the Brazilian prevented any potential attacks and got the better of Sevilla’s attackers.