Juve win is the goal, insists Bayern's van Gaal
Bayern Munich coach Louis van Gaal insists his goal is to win all five of the Germans' remaining Champions League group stage matches - starting with main Group A rivals Juventus on Wednesday.sports Updated: Sep 30, 2009 18:42 IST
Bayern Munich coach Louis van Gaal insists his goal is to win all five of the Germans' remaining Champions League group stage matches - starting with main Group A rivals Juventus on Wednesday.
Bayern missed out on the chance to claim top spot in the Bundesliga on Saturday when they were beaten 1-0 at Hamburg, but while the German league defeat left van Gaal in a bad mood, a win over Juventus would keep his side top of their Champions League group.
"My work continues, my task is to win this game and every group stage match," said the Dutchman.
The Italians warmed up for their trip to Bavaria with a 1-1 draw against Bologna in Serie A at the weekend, but there are genuine concerns in the Munich defence.
Van Gaal has an embarrassment of riches in attack with Germany forwards Mario Gomez and Miroslav Klose competing with Croatia's Ivica Olic for the lone striker position flanked by wingers Arjen Robben and Franck Ribery.
But things are not so solid in defence, particularly at right and left back.
In Hamburg, Brazil's Breno was used on the right with Philipp Lahm used on the left, but without success.
So far, new signings Daniel Pranjic and Edson Braafheid have not fulfilled expectations and only centre-back Daniel van Buyten is producing consistent good form while Bayern are missing Brazil's Lucio who was sold to Inter Milan in the summer.
The Germans will have their hands full containing Juventus' attack including Vicenzo Iaquinta, David Trezeguet and former Werder Bremen play-maker Diego in what will be the acid test of Munich's credentials as Group A winners.
The sides experienced mixed fortunes in their opening games, Bayern winning 3-0 at Maccabi Haifa FC while Juve drew 1-1 at home against Bordeaux.
With goalkeeper Michael Rensing dropped in favour of veteran Hans-Joerg Butt, Bayern at least have stability between the posts.
Butt is still sporting a prominent black eye, the result of a collision with Gomez in training prior to the Hamburg defeat.
"Nothing's broken," the keeper reported, although he had to have seven stitches to a cut, received treatment right up until kick-off, and slept on his side to avoid further swelling.
Despite the shiner, Butt turned in a fine display against the league leaders and saved his side from going behind on 31 minutes with two world-class saves, but the 35-year-old was powerless to prevent Mladen Petric' late winner.
Another stern test awaits Butt and his defenders on Wednesday and Butt insists concentration will be the key.
"When top teams meet, you're punished for the smallest error," he said with Bayern seventh in the Bundesliga while Juventus are only second to leaders Sampdoria in Serie A.