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Barça feat fires Van Bommel

Published: Thursday 19 October 2006, 15.10CET
Mark van Bommel told FC Bayern München have a way to go before they can start dreaming of emulating the success of his former club FC Barcelona.
by Paul Saffer
from Lisbon features

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Published: Thursday 19 October 2006, 15.10CET

Barça feat fires Van Bommel

Mark van Bommel told FC Bayern München have a way to go before they can start dreaming of emulating the success of his former club FC Barcelona.

FC Bayern München look all but through from UEFA Champions League Group B after last night's 1-0 win at Sporting Clube de Portugal - a familiar position for midfielder Mark van Bommel who won the competition with FC Barcelona player in May before his switch to Germany.

'Very tough'
After Bayern's dominance in the opening stages produced Bastian Schweinsteiger's impressive 19th-minute goal, it was Sporting who made the running, especially following the German international's 47th-minute sending-off. "It was very tough," Van Bommel told "We played well for the first 20 minutes, we created chances, but after that we didn't play well. We were going backwards, so Sporting were the better team, especially following the red card. Because of that we are very satisfied with three points."

Victory hope
So can Bayern, five points clear with a perfect record, go on to emulate Barcelona and lift the trophy? "We have played very well, we have nine points, we haven't conceded, but it is difficult to say whether we can win it," the 29-year-old Dutchman said. "With Barcelona we reached that point after beating Chelsea [FC in the last 16], not in the group stage. We have a very good squad but everybody has to work 100 per cent and you need a lot of luck. I'm not sure if we are one of the favourites. I think Chelsea and Barcelona are."

Having spent his entire career in his native Netherlands before leaving PSV Eindhoven for Barcelona in 2005, Van Bommel is playing in his third country in as many seasons - but is in no hurry to pack his bags again. "I am happily settled in Germany," he said. "I am enjoying playing for Bayern and everybody is helping me at the club. It is always good to play abroad, but I hope I play for more than one year at Bayern."

Last updated: 19/10/06 13.53CET

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