Rudi Garcia hails `exceptional` Bayern ahead of Rome clash
Roma coach Rudi Garcia expects the Serie A title challengers to face an "exceptional" Bayern Munich on Tuesday when the sides meet for a much-anticipated Champions League clash.
Rome: Roma coach Rudi Garcia expects the Serie A title challengers to face an "exceptional" Bayern Munich on Tuesday when the sides meet for a much-anticipated Champions League clash.
Roma warmed up for the Group E match in the Italian capital with a one-sided 3-0 win over league strugglers Chievo, the goals coming from Mattia Destro, Adem Ljajic and a Francesco Totti penalty.
"Now, we can focus on the Champions League," Garcia told Sky Sport Italia.
"I`m 100 percent confident in my players and the qualities they possess: tonight Destro and Ljajic both scored, and that`s a clear sign that everyone is determined to show that they are ready."
Despite Chievo languishing in the far reaches of Italy`s top flight, Garcia admitted the win against the Verona side was "key" ahead of a crucial run of games for Roma`s hopes both at home and in Europe.
On what is their return to Europe following a three-year absence, Roma beat CSKA Moscow 5-1 and impressed observers on their way to a 1-1 draw away to Manchester City.
But after Bayern`s 6-0 rout of Werder Bremen on Saturday, Garcia was quick to offer plaudits to the German giants and their coach, Pep Guardiola.
"It wasn`t easy for Guardiola going to Bayern, but he`s a great coach and will continue to do well there," said the Frenchman.
"They`re an exceptional squad. Bayern are ready... but we`re counting on a red hot atmosphere at the Olimpico. We can`t wait, it will be a fantastic game."
Bayern`s win moved them four points clear of Borussia Moenchengladbach but Roma fans would perhaps be among the first to underline the fact Bremen, who now sit bottom of the Bundesliga, have been struggling all season.
Roma`s three-goal cushion by half-time gave them a chance to step slightly off the pedal after the interval.
Although the intensity was kept high Garcia, who rested Ivorian striker Gervinho throughout, was able to replace Totti on the hour mark before later sending Leandro Paredes on in place of Miralem Pjanic.
Destro opened Roma`s account with a diving header from Pjanic`s cross in the fourth minute, and told Sky Sport: "We dominated Chievo from start to finish and finished the game in determined fashion and we did well to wrap the game up in the first half."
The Italy international, who has now scored in his past three Serie A starts, added: "We`ve been convinced of our potential since before the start of the season.
"We try to impose our game on every match we play. Against Bayern it should be a great game in front of our home fans. Whatever happens, it will be spectacular."