(Reuters) – Bayern Munich’s 6-1 demolition of Porto on Tuesday for a spot in the Champions League semi-finals was just what the doctor ordered for an injury-plagued team chasing a treble.
Despite a string of absences, including Arjen Robben, David Alaba, Franck Ribery and Medhi Benatia, and internal turmoil following the sudden departure of their long-time doctor, Bayern were sublime in the first half scoring five times.
“It is difficult to find the right words to explain this,” Bayern’s Thomas Mueller, whose goal made him Germany’s all-time top scorer in the competition with 27, told reporters. “It could not have worked better than it did.
“A lot was said before the game about us but to play such a first half is absolutely amazing.”
Bayern, with Bastian Schweinsteiger back from injury but left on the bench, struck three times in 13 minutes and added two more late in the first period to blow away the Portuguese and wipe out the 3-1 first leg deficit.
“Now we can joke about it but it was a huge piece of work. When you’re with you back to the wall then sometimes that is a good thing,” Mueller said.
“There are times in a season when you win something from a game and that was one such game,” he added, referring to the confidence boost from such an important victory.
Bayern, who could clinch the Bundesliga title this weekend and are also in the German Cup semi-finals, are attempting to repeat their 2013 treble-winning season and add a sixth European crown to their collection of silverware.
Mueller’s team mate Robert Lewandowski, who scored twice on Tuesday, is confident the German side, eyeing their fourth Champions League final since 2010, were not done yet.
“We played an amazing game. It was a lot of hard work and a lot of people thought we could not make it,” said the Poland striker.
“But we can do everything now. We are still a strong team. We always want to step on the pedal no matter who we play. We want to win everything and we can do it.”