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Tuesday 6 December 2016

Five-star Bayern blow Porto away

Bayern Munich defender Philipp Lahm (left) celebrates with midfielder Thomas Mueller (centre) and Spanish midfielder Thiago Alcantara after Mueller's goal in the Champions League quarter-final second leg win over Porto.
Bayern Munich defender Philipp Lahm (left) celebrates with midfielder Thomas Mueller (centre) and Spanish midfielder Thiago Alcantara after Mueller's goal in the Champions League quarter-final second leg win over Porto.

Bayern Munich made light work of a 3-1 first-leg deficit as they battered Porto 6-1 to sail into the last four of the Champions League with a 7-4 margin on aggregate.

It was supposed to be a night that would test Bayern boss Pep Guardiola's mettle after last week's disappointing defeat in Portugal, but his charges made a mockery of such predictions with five goals in 26 minutes in the first half.

Thiago Alcantara, Jerome Boateng, Robert Lewandowski (two) and Thomas Mueller caused the damage as they mercilessly tore their Primeira Division opponents apart with scintillating passing, breathtaking movement and ruthless finishing. Thiago, who scored Bayern's consolation at the Estadio do Dragao last week, kicked off the rout by nipping in front of his marker at the near post to nod home from Juan Bernat's superb cross after 14 minutes.

Amid the hostile environment of a raucous Allianz Arena Porto began to fall apart and Bayern levelled the contest on aggregate in the 22nd minute, with Boateng heading in his first goal of the season after Holger Badstuber nodded Thiago's corner back across goal. The Germany international's effort had just enough pace to creep past Fabiano, but questions will have to be asked about the Porto keeper after he seemed slow to react.

The visitors could have no complaints about Bayern's truly exquisite third, which completed a three-goal 13-minute salvo to totally turn the tie around.

First, Philipp Lahm showed his class with an inch-perfect cross on the volley, before Mueller unselfishly flicked the ball onto Lewandowski's head and the Polish striker made no mistake from close range. Mueller twisted the knife with a somewhat fortuitous, somewhat hilarious, fourth as his low shot from distance was deflected off Bruno Martins Indi and totally caught poor Fabiano off-guard as the ball trickled through his legs when he tried in vain to clear on the floor.

With Porto shell shocked, Lewandowski was hardly feeling charitable as he picked up the ball from Mueller and fired home low past Fabiano with deadly accuracy.

After the interval, Martinez gave the visitors a glimmer of hope, but with five minutes left, Alonso fired in the free-kick with aplomb to complete the scoring.

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