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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Sep, 13, 2006

Inter's defeat an added bonus for Bayern - Magath

MUNICH, Sept 13 (Reuters) - Bayern Munich received an unexpected bonus from the opening round of Champions League matches, as their own 4-0 win over Spartak Moscow was coupled with a surprise defeat for rivals Inter Milan.

While Bayern were seeing off Spartak with a great display of attacking football in the second half of their Group B match at the Allianz Arena, Inter went down 1-0 away to Sporting Lisbon and had French midfielder Patrick Vieira sent off.

Vieira will be missing when Bayern travel to Inter in their next fixture on Sept. 27 and coach Felix Magath believes the poor start from the Italians will present his side with a better opportunity to win the game.

'I think the Sporting Lisbon win was a very good result for us as well,' Magath said.

'It means Inter are going to be under a lot of pressure when we play there in the next game, and it will mean they have to attack.'

Spartak did precious little of that in Tuesday's game in Munich and it took a long time for Bayern to find a way to break them down.

In the first half the Bundesliga champions had lots of possession but kept playing aimless balls forward, with little movement from the forwards Lukas Podolski and Claudio Pizarro.

They looked a lot more dynamic in the second half and an excellent run from Pizarro, who was picked out by Willy Sagnol's perfect long pass, gave them an opening goal just three minutes after the break.

Roque Santa Cruz soon added a second and Bastian Schweinsteiger and Hasan Salihamidzic rounded off a fine win with well-taken goals.

The four second half goals vindicated Magath's decision to leave out Roy Makaay, who had looked a long way from his nimble best in Saturday's 2-1 Cup win over St Pauli.

The worry for the coach will have been the nervous performance of Podolski, who was comfortably Bayern's worst player on his Champions League debut.

'It was very good to see the forwards Pizarro and Santa Cruz getting amongst the goals,' Magath said on the subject of his strikers.

'Once we got the early breakthrough in the second half the goals kept on coming. I think at times we played to our full potential.'

Bayern still regard themselves as outsiders for the Champions League crown and Magath reiterated that the club's target is just to get through the group phase.

A victory over Inter next time out would leave them virtually assured of reaching that goal.

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