Bayern were close to defensive perfection, says Lahm

The Bavarians’ captain believes their 4-0 thrashing of Barcelona proves they are capable of beating any side in the world on their day

Bayern Munich star Philipp Lahm has heaped praise on his side in the wake of their 4-0 thrashing of Barcelona in the Champions League semi-final first leg on Tuesday.

Goals from Mario Gomez and Arjen Robben, as well as a double from Thomas Muller, saw Jupp Heyneckes’ side take a massive step towards the final at Wembley, and Lahm insists their bilstering performance was further proof that they are capable of defeating any opposition.

“Of course I can comprehend what happened today!” Lahm told reporters after the match.”We have the potential to beat any team.

“Our defensive performance was close to perfection, that was the key to our success today.”

Bayern’s opening two goals came as a direct result of set-pieces, and Lahm went on to stress that the success of their free-kick routines was no accident.

“It is a well known fact that Barcelona have problems in the air,” he stated.

Javi Martinez also highlighted the importance of Bayern’s set-piece dominance, but warned that Barcelona’s recent comebacks in the tournament mean the tie is not yet dead and buried.

“We took advantage of set-pieces and felt comfortable despite having to run lots which Barcelona make you do,” the Spaniard told reporters. ”We took advantage of dead ball situations.

“If it was another team you might feel confident [in the 2nd leg] but this is Barca who have beaten AC Milan 4-0.

“We’ve played a lot of good games this season, so I’m not sure if this is the best.”

Messi: I was fit but not '100 per cent'

The Argentine has confessed that he was rusty after a couple of weeks on the sidelines after rushing back from a hamstring injury in time to face PSG in the quarters

Barcelona attacker Lionel Messi has admitted that he did not feel “100 per cent comfortable” in Tuesday night’s devastating 4-0 defeat by Bayern Munich – but insisted that he was fit to start at the Allianz Arena.

The Argentina international had not featured for the Blaugrana since making a rapid return from a hamstring strain to lead his side into the last four at the expense of Paris Saint-Germain on April 10.

Messi struggled terribly to get into the game against Bayern and appeared to be struggling physically at one point in the second half, but he dismissed the suggestion that he should not have been risked in the first leg.

“It was some days since I played and I didn’t feel 100% comfortable but I was not injured, so I could play,” the 25-year-old told reports  after the game.

Barcelona’s loss represented their heaviest defeat in European competition and Messi conceded that the odds are against the Catalans turning the tie around at Camp Nou next week.

“It’s 4-0 and it will be difficult because they are a great team,” he conceded. “But we’ll try to score at home and do our best.

“We must go on. Now we must win la Liga soon.”

Meanwhile, Messi’s team-mate Gerard Pique was distraught with his side’s showing in Bavaria, but admitted that the visitors had come off a clear second best.

“They were quicker, stronger and played better football,” the centre-half told TV3. “They were the superior team.

“[Winning the tie] is almost impossible. We will have to turn around and go out and win the next match for our fans.

“We have been given a refresher.”

Mario Gomez appeared to have been offside when he slotted home Bayern’s second goal, while Thomas Muller fouled Jordi Alba in the build-up to Arjen Robben’s goal moments later.

However, Pique did not want to lay the blame on officials for Barcelona’s humiliating defeat.

“The referee did not have any influence on the result,” the former Manchester United defender stated.

The second leg will take place at Camp Nou on May 1.

Ribery: We knew we could trouble Barcelona

The Bayern Munich winger says his team was always confident they could cause Barcelona problems following their 4-0 triumph at the Allianz Arena

Bayern Munich star Franck Ribery says his side knew they had strikers who could trouble Barcelona, after their shock 4-0 victory over the four-time Champions League winners.

A brace from Thomas Muller and goals from Arjen Robben and Mario Gomez sealed a resounding victory for the German champions as they condemned Barcelona to their heaviest away defeat in Europe.

“To get such a result we knew we had to run a lot as a team,” Ribery told Canal + afer the match.

“Apart from that, we knew we had the strikers who could score. We’re very happy.

“There is another game to play, but I think we performed well tonight.”

Die Roten travel to Camp Nou on May 1 for the second leg.

Xavi sickened by Barcelona's 'worst result ever'

The playmaker has conceded it is now ‘almost impossible’ for the Blaugrana to progress to Wembley, admitting they were clearly second-best at the Allianz Arena

Xavi has described Tuesday’s humiliating 4-0 defeat at the hands of Champions League semi-final opponents Bayern Munich as Barcelona’s “worst result ever”.

The loss at the Allianz Arena was the biggest in the competition’s history at the last-four stage and represented the Blaugrana’s heaviest away defeat in European competition, and their principal playmaker admitted afterwards that the Catalans could have no complaints about the final scoreline.

“It’s the worst result ever,” Xavi told reporters. “They were better – and I don’t mind saying that.”

The Spain international also conceded that the Liga leaders have little hope of turning the tie around in the second leg at Camp Nou next week.

“It’s almost impossible,” he confessed. “But we must try to, for this club and for everyone.”

Barcelona made history in the quarter-finals by recovering from a 2-0 loss away to AC Milan to progress 4-2 on aggregate after a stirring second-leg fightback.

Robben hails Bayern Munich's 'greatest display' against Barcelona

The Netherlands international believes his side’s decimation of Barcelona on Tuesday was “almost inconceivable” but has warned his team-mates to remain humble

Bayern Munich winger Arjen Robben has labelled Tuesday’s 4-0 thrashing of Barcelona as arguably the German side’s finest-ever display.

Two goals from Thomas Muller, and further efforts from Mario Gomez and Robben himself gave the Bavarians the largest margin of victory in Champions League semi-final history, and the 29-year-old was stunned by the incredbile nature of the result.

“This was pure enjoyment. Fantastic. It’s almost inconceivable how well we played. I don’t even think we ever played this well before,” he told ITV after the match.

“No, I really can’t [believe the result], but I think we can be very proud, because we gave them good competition in a game everybody said was 50-50.

“[Barcelona] have dominated Europe over the last five years, and to beat them like this in such a terrific way, I think we have to be proud. But on the other hand, let’s be humble about it and enjoy this evening, because there’s still a game to play and we have to be ready [for the second leg].”

Robben’s involvement did not come without controversy, however, as he appeared to benefit from Muller’s unpunished block on Jordi Alba in the build-up to his goal – but the winger refused to be drawn on the incident.

“I don’t know [if we benefited from the referee’s decisions], I don’t want to speak about this. I want to speak about the way we played tonight, because I think that needs to have the upper hand.

“We fought for every metre, and they only had one chance. In the end we really deserved the win.”