herald

Sunday 17 December 2017

Basel eye progress in Munich

BASEL coach Heiko Vogel returned to haunt former club Bayern Munich as the Swiss side take a slim 1-0 lead into the Champions League second round second leg in two weeks' time.

The humble Swiss team, who qualified for the last 16 at the expense of Manchester United, had St Jakob Park rocking again as substitute Valentin Stocker scored an 86th-minute winner for the home side.

Basel, who often play in front of only a few thousand fans in the Swiss league, hit the woodwork twice, then survived long periods of Bayern pressure before snatching victory.

While Basel's players milked the crowd's acclaim, Bayern trooped off thinking the unthinkable.

Basel's win was a boost for Swiss football following the national team's failure to qualify for Euro 2012 and the issues facing their domestic game.

"We are very happy but we know we're only halfway there," said Vogel, who has only been in charge since November and spent nine years working with Bayern's youth divisions where he coached some of the present Bayern team.

"The recipe is very simple, we have an unbelievable will to win and great understanding. We have fun every day during training and that shows."

Goalkeeper Yann Sommer, whose saves kept Basel in the game, said: "We have beaten maybe the best two teams in the world, it's amazing what happened here, we believed in ourselves. Luck was on our side."

Bayern coach Jupp Heynckes conceded: "If (Franck) Ribery's chances had gone in it would have been a different game."

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