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Arjen Robben scored one and made another to put FC Bayern München in a dominant position after the first leg of their quarter-final against Olympique de Marseille.
The Dutchman had been an injury doubt after limping out of training on the eve of the game, yet there was no questioning his fitness once the contest began. After setting up Mario Gomez for his 11th UEFA Champions League goal of the season in the final minute of the first half, the electric Robben doubled his team's advantage with a masterfully-taken strike 21 minutes from time.
While Didier Deschamps' team created chances, notably when Loïc Rémy hit the outside of the post early on, they lacked their opponents' ruthless streak and now face an uphill task in Munich on 3 April when they will be without the suspended Alou Diarra.
This may have been OM's first appearance in the last eight since they won the trophy in 1993, yet there was a subdued atmosphere at kick-off as sections of the home crowd remained silent to reflect their disquiet at the team's recent domestic struggles. The stadium was soon buzzing, however, as the hosts started brightly, Rémy striking the upright from a tight angle in the seventh minute after Manuel Neuer had sprung to his left to parry Rod Fanni's header.
It looked like Marseille might regret that miss as Bayern slowly established a stranglehold on the game. Robben was giving Jérémy Morel a particularly difficult time on the right, but when he slipped Thomas Müller through the German international failed to pick out a team-mate with his cut-back. For all their possession and pressure, the four-time European champions struggled to create clear chances. Indeed, Neuer remained the busier of the two goalkeepers, getting down to save Rémy's low effort on 42 minutes.
Yet seconds later the Bundesliga outfit struck. Robben released Gomez through the middle, and after holding off César Azpilicueta's challenge, the forward hit a low shot that dipped under the body of Elinton Andrade. The competition debutant, standing in for suspended skipper Steve Mandanda, went some way to redeeming himself by keeping out another Gomez effort with his feet shortly before the hour.
By then, Marseille were attacking with greater urgency. Mathieu Valbuena had already nodded one chance over when Rémy dispossessed Jérôme Boateng on the edge of the box only for an advanced Neuer to block the French international's attempt. From the resulting corner, Diarra blazed a header off target.
Jupp Heynckes' charges gave their opponents a lesson in finishing on 69 minutes, Robben playing a superb one-two with Müller before converting a simple yet wonderfully clinical goal by curling inside the far post. Deschamps sent on Brandão and Benoît Cheyrou, and though the latter shot narrowly over in added time, the substitutions failed to spark a comeback. The only blot on Bayern's evening was a yellow card for substitute Bastian Schweinsteiger that will keep him out of the second leg.
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