Michael Ballack: 'Pep Guardiola just what Bayern Munich needed'

Ballack: 'Guardiola just what Bayern needed'
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Ex-Bayern Munich skipper Michael Ballack believes that Pep Guardiola has helped sharpen focus and avoid complacency at the Allianz Arena this season.

Former Bayern Munich captain Michael Ballack has declared that Pep Guardiola's arrival at the Allianz Arena was the perfect way to provide the treble winners with a fresh challenge this season.

Guardiola took charge of a side that enjoyed the most successful campaign in their history last season under Jupp Heynckes, but he has quickly stamped his authority on the Champions League holders.

Ballack believes that Bayern's 3-1 win over Manchester City two weeks ago has proved that they can improve further under Guardiola, as they continue an 11-match unbeaten run in all competitions.

He told Sky Sports News: "It's always hard to set new goals after you win the Champions League. What are your ambitions for the following season.

"The change of coach was exactly what Bayern needed. Fresh challenges have arrived with Guardiola. He is absolutely world-class. He knows exactly what the players need in every situation.

"The Champions League game against Manchester City showed that this team still has plenty to offer. That was extraordinary."

The Spaniard is yet to taste defeat in the Bundesliga, sitting top after collecting 23 points from a possible 27 in nine games.

Bayern Munich's Spanish headcoach Pep Guardiola looks ahead during the awarding ceremony of the Audi Cup after the football match Bayern Munich FC vs Manchester City in Munich on August 1, 2013
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1Borussia DortmundDortmund86112351819
2Bayern Munich85212171417
3RB Leipzig85121510516
4Hoffenheim84311510515
5Borussia MonchengladbachBorussia M'bach84221212014
6Schalke 04Schalke8413109113
7Eintracht FrankfurtFrankfurt841387113
8Augsburg8332118312
9Hannover833286212
10Mainz 0583141013-310
11Stuttgart8314610-410
12Bayer LeverkusenB. Leverkusen8233151329
13Hertha Berlin8233810-29
14Wolfsburg8152811-38
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16Freiburg8143516-117
17Werder Bremen804439-64
18FC Koln8017317-141
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