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Guardiola tells Bayern to press Plzeň

Accordingly to Josep Guardiola, FC Bayern München must begin positively against FC Viktoria Plzeň whose coach Pavel Vrba is hoping to catch out the holders in Munich.

Bayern coach Josep Guardiola oversees training
Bayern coach Josep Guardiola oversees training ©Getty Images

Josep Guardiola urged FC Bayern München to seize the initiative from the off when they host FC Viktoria Plzeň in UEFA Champions League Group D on Wednesday. The Bavarians had to come from behind to beat 1. FSV Mainz 05 on Saturday, but their 42-year-old coach does not expect history to repeat itself. Opposite number Pavel Vrba, however, believes football is "still full of surprises".

 Josep Guardiola, coach
I have a lot of respect for our opponents. I saw them against Manchester City and they performed very well in the first half. They have some excellent players and play nice football. The team has changed a bit since I was at Barcelona [who played Plzeň in the 2011/12 group stage] but their philosophy remains the same. 

In the Bundesliga recently, we have been poor in the first half but I don't expect this to happen tomorrow. Playing [Philipp] Lahm in midfield was an experiment and he did extremely well. I know he is a full-back and he will resume that position, but don't forget about Rafinha.

I need all my players because everyone in the squad is important. [Mario] Götze is one of those players who thinks quickly on the pitch and I've been impressed with him since coming back from injury. 

Weekend result
Saturday: Bayern 4-1 1. FSV Mainz 05 (Robben 50, Müller 52 82pen, Mandžukić 69; Parker 44)
Neuer; Rafinha (Götze 46), Boateng, Dante (Alaba 42), Contento; Lahm, Robben, Schweinsteiger, Kroos, Müller; Mandžukić (Kirchhoff 74).

• Mario Götze came off the bench to transform a previously poor Bayern performance, setting up their first three goals for a Bundesliga win that kept them a point ahead of Borussia Dortmund and Bayer 04 Leverkusen.

Team news
Jérôme Boateng is suspended following his red card against Manchester City FC. Franck Ribéry came through training unscathed after sitting out the victory over Mainz, but Dante is absent with an ankle injury sustained in the same game.

Pavel Vrba, coach
Two years ago we played Barcelona, now we're facing the Champions League title holders again. There is a very difficult game ahead of us, and to be very honest my feelings are quite intense. Anything could happen. Perhaps we will be able to get a 0-0 draw. Perhaps we will lose. Football is still full of surprises. You never know what will happen.

We have improved a lot since the matches against Barça; we score a lot more goals now, but of course Bayern will put us under a lot of pressure. Guardiola will also have a good game plan and will know how to put us into trouble. We won't play a very offensive style, but we will try to be proactive. We will attempt to keep the ball and surprise our opponents once in a while. Of course we want to survive this group stage.

Weekend result
Saturday: Plzeň 1-1 SK Slavia Praha (Rajtoral 60; Juhar 30)
Kozáčik; Rajtoral, Čišovský, Procházka, Řezník; Hořava, Horváth; Ďuriš (Kovařík 68), Pospíšil (Petržela 46), Kolář; Bakoš (Wágner 83).

• Plzeň came from behind to stretch their unbeaten start to the Czech First League season to 11 games, but their fourth draw of the campaign saw them fall six points adrift of leaders AC Sparta Praha.

Team news
Centre-back Marián Čišovský, the five-goal top scorer in qualifying, is available after returning on Saturday from seven matches out with a calf problem. David Limberský is back in training after tearing his thigh at the end of September but the Bayern trip comes too soon for him.

Match fact
• Bayern earned a 7-1 aggregate victory when the teams met in the 1971/72 European Cup Winners' Cup first round. Wolfgang Sühnholz hit the only goal of the first leg in Plzen and Bayern doubled their aggregate lead in the first minute of the return through Gerd Müller. Although Ivan Bican equalised, Bayern ran out 6-1 winners with Franz Krauthausen, Wilhelm Hoffmann (2), Franz Roth and Müller again scoring. Bayern's current club president Uli Hoeness featured in both games.

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