Match Analysis: Manchester United 1-1 Bayern Munich

Nemanja Vidic of Manchester United heads in the first goal during the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final first leg match against Bayern Munich on April 1, 2014
© Getty Images
Sports Mole takes an in-depth look at Manchester United's 1-1 draw with Bayern Munich in the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final this evening.

Manchester United ensured that they would go into their Champions League quarter-final second leg against Bayern Munich with everything to fight for having held the reigning champions to a 1-1 draw at Old Trafford this evening.

The hosts took the lead against the run of play shortly before the hour mark as Nemanja Vidic rose highest inside the box to steer Wayne Rooney's cross into the bottom corner with a superb header.

They were ahead for just eight minutes, however, as Bastian Schweinsteiger hammered a half-volley into the roof of the United net from inside the box.

Schweinsteiger's evening ended on a sour note, though, as he was dismissed in the 90th minute for a late challenge on Rooney that earned him a second yellow.

Here, Sports Mole takes an in-depth look at an absorbing encounter at Old Trafford.

Match statistics

Man Utd
Shots: 6
On target: 4
Possession: 26%
Corners: 3
Fouls: 12

Bayern Munich
Shots: 16
On target: 3
Possession: 74%
Corners: 6
Fouls: 10

Was the result fair?

Yes. The stats being so heavily in favour of Bayern is no surprise given the control they had over large periods of the match, but what they don't show is the number of clear chances created by either side.

United were on the back foot for the vast majority of the first half as Bayern put on a passing masterclass, but the hosts refused to give in and should have gone into the break ahead after Danny Welbeck squandered a glorious chance five minutes before half time.

For all of their possession, the visitors struggled to break down United's defence and were forced into mostly long-range shots - a fact demonstrated by their unusually small tally of three shots on target. United had at least as many clear-cut chances as their opponents and, from that standpoint, they were worthy of the draw.

Man Utd's performance

Very rarely will United have gone into a home match with so few people expecting them to come away with anything other than a loss. However, they produced arguably their most solid display of the season to keep the all-conquering Bayern Munich at bay and their chances in the tie alive.

Any victory would have been a smash-and-grab one from United's point of view as they were forced to defend for the vast majority of the match - particularly in the first half. They gave possession away far too easily and simply couldn't get close to Bayern as the visitors dominated the ball and controlled the tempo of the game.

However, throughout all that, the defence held firm and refused to buckle against the constant barrage of attacks. They had the best chance of the first half and were much improved in the second, providing more of a match for the visitors and earning themselves a very respectable draw.

David Moyes has not had the best of times against top teams this season, but tonight's display could well be the crowning achievement of his United career so far. Getting the required result in the Allianz Arena still appears to be a step too far, but at least they have given themselves a chance.

Bayern Munich's performance

Bayern had everything apart from their usual cutting edge this evening. The visitors were impeccable on the ball, monopolising possession and winning it back almost immediately on the rare occasions that they lost it.

However, for all of their passing acumen, their final ball was not the best as they struggled to break down United's stubborn defence. They were fortunate to go into the break all square despite their utter dominance, and in terms of chances created they cannot complain at only drawing this match.

Arsenal and Manchester City have already shown that Bayern are not invincible at home this season and the Germans seem to struggle against English clubs. However, if they underestimated United this evening then they are unlikely to make the same mistake twice, so they will still be confident of progressing.

Sports Mole's man of the match

Nemanja Vidic: With Bayern enjoying so much of the ball inside the United half, it was crucial that the home defence had a good game today. Vidic and Rio Ferdinand have shown signs of being past their best at times this season, but they used all of their experience to repeatedly rebuff the relentless Bayern attacks this evening.

In addition to his defensive work, Vidic also made the telling United contribution at the other end of the field, scoring their goal. It was a brilliant finish from the skipper, who was on his way away from goal when he rose to nod into the bottom corner.

Biggest gaffe

This one has to go to Danny Welbeck, who squandered a golden opportunity to give his side the lead five minutes before half time. Having been starved of the ball and not threatening at all in an attacking sense, United suddenly launched a counter-attack that saw Welbeck get the better of Jerome Boateng and bear down on goal.

He only had Manuel Neuer to beat to give his side the lead against the run of play, but his attempted chipped finish was plucked out of the air by the big German keeper. He may have been better served keeping it low and looking for either corner instead of trying the fancy finish. The miss could well come back to haunt his side when the tie is over and done with.

Referee performance

Carlos Velasco Carballo had two major decisions to make in this match, and he got one right and one wrong. The first came when Antonio Valencia threw himself into a challenge with Boateng while already on a yellow card. The Bayern man got to the ball first before getting clobbered, but the ref opted against showing Valencia a second yellow.

He was not so lenient with Schweinsteiger later in the match, giving the midfielder his marching orders for a late challenge on Rooney. The challenge was worthy of a second yellow, but Bayern felt hard done by considering Valencia's earlier let-off.

What next?

Man Utd: Manchester United will look to make it three matches without defeat when they face Newcastle United on Saturday.

Bayern: Bayern, meanwhile, travel to face Augsburg as they play out their final six league matches having already won the title.

Nemanja Vidic of Manchester United heads in the first goal during the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final first leg match against Bayern Munich on April 1, 2014
Read Next:
Result: Bayern clinch away goal in draw with Man Utd
>
You May Like
Recomended from Sports Mole



Tables
LIVE SCORES VIDEPRINTER
expand