I’ll be the first to admit that I was wrong regarding my previous prediction of Manchester United FC’s chances at Old Trafford against German champions FC Bayern Munich.
They were not utterly devastated as I and many others expected.
Instead, Manchester United defiantly held Bayern Munich to a 1-1 draw.
The first half was scoreless despite Bayern’s dominance. United was determined to not give a defensive inch for as long as possible. The home side was rewarded in the 58th minute by a Nemanja Vidic header which found the back Bayern’s net.
Manchester United led the game for just under ten minutes. Bayern midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger made the game level and gifted his team a crucial away goal.
— Daniel Taylor (@DTguardian) April 1, 2014
— BBC Manchester Utd (@bbcmanutd) April 1, 2014
Despite losing the clean sheet, there are some potential silver linings for Manchester United.
First, Schweinsteiger will miss the second leg of the quarterfinals after picking up a second yellow card in the ninetieth minute. Midfielder Javi Martinez has also been ruled out due to his accumulation of yellow cards.
The loss of these players could help Manchester United to squeak past Bayern Munich into the semi-finals.
Second, Bayern Munich has seen four English clubs defeat them at home. Such a pattern could shake the club’s confidence enough to give United a ride into the semi-finals.
Bayern Munich will no doubt be disappointed by their away performance despite the cautious approach taken in the media by manager Pep Guardiola.
Given the pressure they find themselves under, it could motivate Bayern to succeed at home in same way Manchester United attempted to rise to the occasion today
I do credit the Manchester United team, particularly their defense, for standing up to a talented football team that practically everyone expected to bully them at Old Trafford.
Any credit to be had for manager David Moyes? He got his tactics right in that Manchester United weren’t thrashed. However, something in Moyes statements suggest that the draw was better than he expected. He’s “hopeful” they’ll make it through, but confidence is lacking.
This is not the stage of the Champion’s League for timid uncertainty from anyone.
Many in the media will hurriedly talk up Manchester United’s ambitions on the back of a 1-1 draw. I will say they did better than expected.
I’m also not going to make any predictions ahead of the trip to Munich, Germany. It’s not that I’m not afraid of being wrong.
I’d just rather wait to see whether or not I get to be utterly stunned. Always more fun.
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