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By Marcus Christenson at the Olympiastadion
FC Bayern München avoided going out of the UEFA Champions League at the first group stage hurdle for the second year running, but only just as the 2001 winners defeated RSC Anderlecht 1-0.
Dutch striker Roy Makaay converted a 42nd-minute penalty to give his side a precious lead. They had to cling on in the second half, though, as Anderlecht piled on the pressure. Victory meant Bayern finished second in Group A behind winners Olympique Lyonnais, 3-2 conquerors of Celtic FC. The Belgian side, meanwhile, are out of Europe completely.
Onus on attack
Bayern, who had to take all three points to qualify for the knockout stage, started with three forwards: Makaay, Claudio Pizarro and Roque Santa Cruz, although the latter was given a more withdrawn role on the left. Anderlecht adopted a 3-5-2 formation with Pär Zetterberg coming in to reinforce the midfield.
The home team started furiously, creating two good chances within the first six minutes. First, Zé Roberto forced his way into the Anderlecht penalty area only to see his potent shot blocked by Hannu Tihinen. Michael Ballack went close from the subsequent corner.
The game then lost some of its early intensity and it was not until the 23rd minute that Bayern threatened again. This time it was a corner from the right that Ballack flicked on for Pizarro, but the Peruvian was just beaten by Anderlecht goalkeeper Daniel Zitka. Bayern continued to apply the pressure, yet found it difficult to breach a stubborn Anderlecht defence. The guests, meanwhile, rarely threatened and Aruna Dindane's mazy runs often came to a halt before they had created any danger.
Owen Hargreaves then twice threatened with dangerous free-kicks. The first, in the 33rd minute, went just wide with Zitka stranded, and the second just missed the on-rushing Ballack and Pizarro. Anderlecht were then handed their best chance of the half in the 40th minute, but Walter Baseggio blasted high from just outside the area with a clear sight of goal.
The Belgian team were punished two minutes later as Bayern won a penalty when Michal Zewlakow was adjudged to have brought done Pizarro. Makaay made no mistake and his side were ahead at the interval. Anderlecht looked more purposeful after the restart and Samuel Kuffour had to be alert to thwart Dindane in the area, while Ivica Mornar shot narrowly wide after Dindane had set him up with a smart back-heel. Bayern, however, did not heed the warning and the guests continued to carve open a nervous-looking defence.
Zetterberg then delivered an out-swinging corner from the right which Dindane rose to head towards the Bayern goal, only for Bixente Lizarazu to clear on the goalline. Anderlecht coach Hugo Broos decided to increase the pressure on Bayern and introduced Swedish winger Christian Wilhelmsson in place of the more defensive Zewlakow.
Hosts under pressure
Bayern coach Ottmar Hitzfeld, meanwhile, responded by bringing on French full-back Willy Sagnol for Zé Roberto in an attempt to arrest Anderlecht's increased pressure. But the Belgian side continued to create chance after chance, Dindane hitting the side-netting from close range and Marc Hendrikx forcing a save out of Oliver Kahn.
Makaay strike enough
And in the final seconds, Kahn produced a world-class stop from substitute Oleg Iachtchouk's powerful shot which was destined for the bottom corner. A goal at that stage would have seen Bayern consigned to the UEFA Cup, but Makaay’s goal was ultimately enough to win the game and take them through.
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