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Apr 9, 2009

Kaiser blasts worst Bayern in history

Bayern Munich president Franz Beckenbauer has labelled the Bundesliga side's horrifying performance during the 4-0 defeat at Barcelona in the quarter-finals of the Champions League as the worst in the club's history.

Beckenbauer, one of the club's greatest ever players, could not believe what he was seeing as the Catalan club scored four goals in the first 45 minutes of the first leg at the Camp Nou and did not hold back in his post-match criticism.

"What I saw in the first half was without a doubt the worst football Bayern have played in their entire history," the Kaiser said. "It was an exhibition. Almost a humiliation. Barcelona gave us a lesson in football."

The defeat in Spain was Bayern's second embarrassing result in the space of five days, after losing 5-1 to Bundesliga rivals VfL Wolfsburg on Saturday, and leaves the future of under-fire coach Jurgen Klinsmann in doubt.

But chairman Karl-Heinze Rummenigge refused to comment on Klinsmann's future and instead called for Bayern, who are fourth in the German League, to pick themselves up and prepare for a good finish to their domestic campaign.

"We have no chance in the Champions League now, that is obvious," Rummenigge said. "We must focus on the Bundesliga and make sure we qualify for the competition for next season. And we can start with our next match this Saturday against [Eintracht] Frankfurt."

Klinsmann revealed the players were speechless after the demoralising thrashing in Spain and said he expected to receive criticism after such a defeat.

"After the match it was very quiet in our dressing room and nothing was said," the Bayern boss said. "We were taken apart in the first half by a team that is currently setting the standard in Europe ... Criticism for the coach is part of the job after two such bad results."

Klinsmann added that his side had been utterly unable to compensate for the absence of central defenders Lucio and Daniel van Buyten, left back Philipp Lahm and striker Miroslav Klose.

"We wanted to give Barca a fight, throw ourselves into challenges and cramp them with a five-man midfield but we were not able to make it work," he said.

"It was clear in every part of the team that we just could not live with them.

"Obviously it is a tough time for the coach but we have got to stick together and now concentrate fully on the Bundesliga.

"We all know why it has come to this but I am sure we will recover the three points that separate us from the top against Frankfurt on Saturday.

"We know that we now have to win the Bundesliga. I know what is in this team and have no doubt that they will show a reaction."

Bayern midfielder Mark van Bommel, a former Barca player, said it could not have been any worse for the German side and they were lucky not to concede more.

"Perhaps if they only bring eight men to Munich then we have a chance," the Dutchman said.

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