Miroslav Klose came off the bench for FC Bayern München to turn a frustrating evening into a 2-0 victory against AS Roma and told UEFA.com: "It's important to bring something fresh."
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Miroslav Klose told UEFA.com that FC Bayern München had no one to blame but themselves for a nervous opening night in UEFA Champions League Group E after last season's runners-up left it late to clinch victory against AS Roma.
The Germany forward watched anxiously from the bench as the Bundesliga champions struggled to unlock the visitors' watertight backline on a tense evening in Bavaria. But Klose emerged on to the pitch with 23 minutes left to help inspire a late Bayern charge that brought them a 2-0 win.
"It's important to bring something fresh to the team when you come off the bench," said Klose, who found the net seven minutes from time, just four minutes after a sublime Thomas Müller strike had broken the deadlock. "We managed to create chances after we made the changes, and Roma were very tired. You could see that, and luckily we were able to exploit the opportunities we created.
"We let the ball do the running, passed it round well, and made few mistakes in our approach play," Klose added. "We only have ourselves to blame for not getting an end product out of it for so long, and perhaps we should have shot more from distance."
Goalscoring chances were a rare commodity for much of the evening for Bayern as they continually failed to foil Roma's plans to frustrate them with visiting goalkeeper Júlio Sérgio proving a resolute last bastion when the home side did pierce the Giallorossi defence. Goalkeeper Jörg Butt was also called into action as the visitors' counter-attacked effectively with Marco Borriello particularly menacing, but the momentum tilted Bayern's way after Klose's introduction.
The 32-year-old saw a firm header beat Júlio Sérgio but shave the outside of a post before Müller's sweetly-struck shot curled beyond the Brazilian goalkeeper as Bayern's perseverance finally bore fruit. Though Borriello passed up a gilt-edged opportunity to level almost immediately, Klose ended any ambitions of a Roma revival when he touched in Holger Badstuber's wickedly-delivered free-kick.
"It was important to start with a win, especially given that we were playing at home," said Klose, whose team makes the short trip to Switzerland to face FC Basel 1893 in a fortnight. "We've got a lot of hard work ahead of us, and anything remains possible in this group, but I think that we have the quality to be able to finish in top spot."