Man Utd restore some pride with Bayern Munich draw
A backs-to-the-wall performance from David Moyes's team means they are still in with a chance
Manchester United 1 Bayern Munich 1. Manchester United produced one of their best performances of the season but it still wasn't enough to see off Bayern Munich in their Champions League quarter-final clash.
The result hands the reigning European champions the advantage ahead of the return leg at the Allianz Arena next Wednesday, but nonetheless United's battling display against a team who have lost just three times in all competitions since the start of 2013 will give them some much-needed belief.
"The players played very well," said under-fire United manager David Moyes. "I was a bit disappointed that we conceded a goal but it was a really good performance. There was a real determination tonight to ensure we did well. It's a competition we've got really good history in."
Bayern utterly dominated possession, and United managed only 26 per cent of the ball, the lowest by a home team in the Champions League this season.
However, the Germans struggled to create any clear cut openings in the opening hour and the best chance in a goalless first-half fell to Daniel Welbeck, but the England striker wasted a one-on-one with Manuel Neuer when attempted an elaborate chip instead of drilling the ball past the Bayern keeper. "At this level you need to be clinical," admitted Moyes. "When you get the chances, you have to take them."
Nemanja Vidic did just that on 58 minutes, the United captain heading home Wayne Rooney's corner to give the hosts the lead. Alas, the Old Trafford faithful didn't have long to savour their lead as Bayern drew level just eight minutes later. Substitute Mario Mandzukic created the goal, and Bastian Schweinsteiger finished it, though the goalscorer's night turned sour when he was shown a red card by referee Carlos Velasco Carballo for a foul on Wayne Rooney.
Arjen Robben came close to giving Bayern the lead with a shot that shaved the United upright, but the match finished all-square to leave Moyes and his boys in bullish mood.
"We'll go toe to toe with them," said the United boss of the return leg "We've given ourselves a great opportunity to go to Munich and win. Our best football has been in this competition and we'll need our best football."
Bayern coach Pep Guardiola was also pleased with the outcome, despite the fact Schweinsteiger and Javi Martinez will miss the second leg because of suspension. Calling the red card "unfair", the Spaniard added: "But it's OK. If you want to win the Champions League you have to solve and overcome everything during the competition."
Guardiola told reporters that to come away from Old Trafford with an away goal was crucial but all the same he was expecting a tense encounter in Munich. "It's always dangerous when you go into the second leg with a 1-1 draw, but even a 2-1 victory would have been dangerous for us," he explained. "We will try to win the second leg and I am sure we can do it. I have full confidence in my players."