UEFA Champions League preview: Bayern vs Roma
Left-back David Alaba says ambitious Bayern Munich will take nothing for granted when they host AS Roma in Wednesday`s Champions League clash despite their record rout in Rome.
Berlin: Left-back David Alaba says ambitious Bayern Munich will take nothing for granted when they host AS Roma in Wednesday`s Champions League clash despite their record rout in Rome.
Bayern thrashed the Italians 7-1 a fortnight ago at the Olympic Stadium which kept the Bavarians top of their group with a perfect three wins as they set a club record for an away win in Europe.
Netherlands winger Arjen Robben scored twice in the Italian capital to keep Bayern in firm control of Group E and five points ahead of nearest rivals Roma.
Now a fourth group-phase victory at the Allianz Arena will put Bayern in the last 16 with two matches to spare to qualify for the Champions League`s knock-out phase for the seventh year in a row.
"Roma is a strong team and they will come here to take points and have players who can decide a game single-handedly," said Austria international Alaba.
"But we are still very hungry and ambitious."
The 2013 Champions League winners are amongst the favourites to win this season`s title, but Spain midfielder Juan Bernat warned fans not to expect a repeat of the huge scoreline.
"It will be a completely different game to the away fixture," said Bernat.
"The first leg was perfect for us, it was a crazy game, but now things start again at zero.
"It will be difficult and very competitive."
Guardiola`s Bavarians are four-points clear in the Bundesliga.
They are on course to win the German title for the third year running after coming from behind to beat struggling Borussia Dortmund 2-1 in Munich on Saturday.
Roma arrive in Munich low on form and confidence having lost to Bayern, Juventus and Napoli in their last seven games, picking up just two Serie A wins in the process against Cesena and Chievo.
Rudi Garcia`s side lost 2-0 at Napoli on Saturday and the Frenchman hit out at his side`s "mental approach" after the defeat left them second to Juentus in the Serie A table.
"At the start we got our approach all wrong. In the first half we hardly won any of our tackles, then we got into gear as the game wore on.
"The second half was totally different and we saw 25-30 minutes of the real Roma - that should give us confidence going into the coming matches."
Italy midfielder Daniele De Rossi was rested against Napoli and is set to return in front of a four-man defence in Munich.
But Garcia is missing defenders Leandro Castan, Davide Astori and Douglas Maicon through injury.
"We`re down to the bare bones in defence and both left-footed centre-backs are unavailable," he admitted.
Bayern will also have important players absent in the shape of long-term injury victims Bastian Schweinsteiger, Javi Martinez and Thiago Alcantara.