Carlo Ancelotti: Bayern's preseason no reason to worry after Super Cup win
Carlo Ancelotti said Bayern Munich's poor preseason results are no cause for alarm as his side won the first trophy of the season with a victory over Borussia Dortmund on penalties in the German Super Cup.
U.S. attacker Christian Pulisic fired the hosts ahead on 12 minutes at the Westphalenstadion, but Robert Lewandowski equalised six minutes later from close range. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang restored BVB's lead on 71 minutes with a superb finish, before Roman Burki's own goal with only two minutes remaining sent the game to penalties penalties.
Joshua Kimmich saw his spot-kick stopped by Burki, but Bayern's backup Sven Ulreich saved penalties from ex-Bayern midfielder Sebastian Rode and Marc Bartra to prove the unlikely hero for the Bavarians.
The victory was welcome relief to Ancelotti, whose side had lost five out of six in preseason -- including both game in the Audi Cup they hosted -- conceding 14 goals in the process.
But Ancelotti said he was "proud" of his side's effort as the Bundesliga champions twice coming from behind to secure the win.
"Of course the title is important. I'm pleased. We played with good concentration," he said. "Our preseason hasn't been good but you don't need to worry. When the season starts, we will be there."
Bayern's new sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic, who was just named to the post this week, acknowledged Bayern's poor run of form but was happy to see them come through on Saturday.
"The team showed their character and came back from behind twice," he said. "We have talked a lot with the coach and the players in the past few days. We are Bayern Munich and cannot afford so many defeats. Today was important as we played like Bayern Munich again."
Ulreich was equally optimistic after playing the hero in place of Manuel Neuer, who is still recovering from a foot injury.
"We know that preseason hasn't gone as well as we had wanted but today we saw the Bayern that everyone wants to see, especially in the first half when we had lots of chances," Ulreich told German broadcaster ZDF after the final whistle.
"We should have used these [goals] better, and we also conceded two sloppy goals. In the end, we showed great morale, getting the result we wanted. We have to continue in this manner."
Asked about his double penalty save which won the game, Ulreich said: "Of course, I'm pleased to have helped the team in a penalty shootout and win a title."
Mark Lovell covers Bayern Munich for ESPN FC. Follow him on Twitter: @LovellLowdown.