Despite looking to Borussia Dortmund in the DFB-Pokal semis, Bayern Munich manager Pep Guardiola says that he is still proud of what his squad achieved this season.
“I’m proud of my team as never before,” Guardiola said during the post-game interview. “You can’t criticise your team when they’ve played so well. I’m very proud of my players. We did everything we could and I’m happy with that.”
Bayern is on a roll this season, winning the Bundesliga title just last week, and are currently set to contend against Barcelona for a shot in the finals of the Champions League. However, their chances of pulling of a treble this season ended after losing against Dortmund in the DFB semis last Tuesday.
Bayern led early in the match, thanks to a goal made by striker Robert Lewandowski in the first half, and had everything under control until Dortmund’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang managed to sink in an equaliser in the 75th minute. From there, the Borussians turned back the pressure to Guardiola’s men.
The Bavarian’s boss noted that the game-changer for the two teams was when Dortmund sent in Hendrik Mkhitaryan to replace Shinji Kagawa in the 70th minute. “We played very well and only had problems for 15 minutes after Mkhitaryan came on,” he remarked. Mkhitaryan was instrumental in setting up Aubameyang for the shot.
Guardiola also admitted that his me4an showed signs of tiredness in the extra 30 minutes leading into the penalty shootout. Both Philipp Lahm and Xabi Alonso ended up slipping in their attempts in the penalty kicks, while Manuel Neuer hit the crossbar. “We looked a bit tired in the shootout. Congratulations to BVB and best of luck to them for the final,” the manager said.
“Obviously you’re going to slip sometimes but it’s agonising when something like that happens in a semifinal,” Lahm said of their penalty misses. “There are certainly better moments to have your standing leg give way. We failed to wrap it up in normal and extra time.”