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Bayern ready for Sporting chance

Published: Sunday 22 October 2006, 21.45CET
Such has been FC Bayern München's impeccable record that a draw with Sporting Clube de Portugal will be enough to put them through with two games to spare.

Tournament statistics

BayernSporting

Goals scored16
 
3
Attempts on target59
 
26
Attempts off target67
 
47
Corners47
 
33
Offsides14
 
20
Fouls committed170
 
112
Yellow cards22
 
13
Red cards2
 
0
 
Published: Sunday 22 October 2006, 21.45CET

Bayern ready for Sporting chance

Such has been FC Bayern München's impeccable record that a draw with Sporting Clube de Portugal will be enough to put them through with two games to spare.

Such has been FC Bayern München's impeccable record in the competition so far that they prepare for the return with Sporting Clube de Portugal knowing even a draw will be enough to put them into the UEFA Champions League knockout rounds with two games to spare. A fourth successive win will guarantee the German champions first place in Group B if FC Internazionale Milano fail to defeat FC Spartak Moskva in the section's other fixture.

First place the aim
• Last season Bayern won all three opening games in the UEFA Champions League only to then succumb to defeat on Matchday 4 away at Juventus. They will be hoping to go one better this time and secure first place in the group after three successive campaigns in which they had to be satisfied with the runners-up position.

• Having won in Lisbon two weeks ago they will not lack confidence, Bastian Schweinsteiger's first-half goal proving enough to keep Bayern's colours flying high. Even though the German international midfielder was sent off two minutes into the second half his team held on for the three points to follow up wins against Spartak (4-0) and Inter (2-0).

Sporting struggles
• That was the first time the teams had met in UEFA competition and it extended Sporting's poor set of results against German sides to no wins in 13 games, which feature nine defeats and four draws. At home against visitors from Portugal, the Munich club have been almost invincible with only one draw and seven wins in eight encounters.

• That came in the 1990/91 European Champion Clubs' Cup quarter-final when FC Porto emerged with a 1-1 scoreline at the Olympiastadion, although Bayern progressed thanks to a 2-0 second-leg success in Porto. That was the first time the teams had met since the final of the 1986/87 competition which the Portuguese club won 2-1 in Vienna.

Home superiority
• Felix Magath's team are looking to extend an impressive home record in the competition. Since losing to Juventus in the 2004/05 group stage they have put together seven wins and a draw in the subsequent eight fixtures, the last coming on Matchday 1 when they put four goals past Spartak without reply.

• Sporting were disappointed not to get anything out of the home fixture on 18 October as they put their visitors under pressure and came close when Anderson Polga struck a post. With Inter winning for the first time in the group it left the Portuguese runners-up with only a one-point advantage over the Nerazzurri – whom they defeated 1-0 in Lisbon on Matchday 1 before a 1-1 draw at Spartak - and they follow this game with a visit to Milan. Their hope is that it will help them to qualify for the UEFA Champions League knockout stages for the first time.

• Paulo Bento's men are also seeking a first-ever away win in the competition and it will concern them that they have never conceded less than two goals on their six visits to Germany. They have lost every game, the last in the 2000/01 first group stage when they went down 3-2 at Bayer 04 Leverkusen. Sporting held a first-half advantage at the BayArena before conceding three goals in 12 minutes after the break.

• Paulo Bento played against Bayern for SL Benfica in the 1995/96 UEFA Cup third round. He was booked in both legs as eventual winners Bayern won 4-1 at home and 3-1 away.

Last updated: 30/10/06 10.01CET

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