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UEFA Champions League
November 20, 2012
• 2:45 PM
• Estadio de Mestalla, Valencia
Referee: H. Webb
• Attendance: 35407
S. Feghouli 77'
T. Müller 82'
As for Bayern, Jupp Heynckes will be glad that his side have qualified although he will have concerns with his side's performance, particularly in the final third. Bayern lacked invention and rarely troubled the ten men of Valencia. Up next for the Germans is a home tie against the Belarus champions Bate Borisov, where they will be looking to avenge that shock 3-1 defeat in Minsk. Valencia travel to France to take on bottom-placed Lille. That's all from me on what has been a thrilling draw at the Mestalla. Until next time, good night!
It was a mature and disciplined showing from Valencia tonight after what was a rather abject performance in Munich. Adil Rami and Sofiane Feghouli were the stand-out performers tonight, highlighted by their industrious work ethic.
FULL TIME: VALENCIA 1 - 1 BAYERN. A result which ensures that both teams progress to the knockout stages with one game to spare. It looked as though Bayern would dominate when Antonio Barragan was dismissed late in the first half but Valencia produced an admirable performance to frustrate the German side and they took the lead through Sofiane Feghouli's deflected strike. However, Pellegrino's side could not hold on for a famous victory and Bayern levelled eight minutes from time with Thomas Muller's predatory strike. It finishes all square at the Mestalla.
90' + 4'
Roberto Soldado looks to wriggle free in the closing stages but he is outmuscled by Dante who clears the danger. This has been a wonderful spirited performance from the home side.
90' + 2'
Valencia refuse to give up hope of three unlikely points and Soldado looks for the run of Tino Costa in the box, but Dante is on hand to intercept.
Bastian Schweinsteiger looks to steal the points for Bayern at the death but his ambitious strike from range clears the crossbar.
Adil Rami has been a rock in the heart of the Valencia defence tonight and he throws himself in front of Gomez's effort to prevent his side from going behind.
Yellow Card Guaita
Ever Banega whips a freekick into the Bayern box and Neuer is off his line quickly to punch the ball clear with Rami lurking. Good decision from the goalkeeper.
Yellow Card Roberto Soldado
Roberto Soldado receives a caution for a tackle on Manuel Neuer. That will rule him out of Valencia's final Champions League match against Lille.
Bayern nearly snatch a second when Schweinsteiger's dipping drive heads towards goal but Guaita produces a crucial fingertipped save to push it around the post.
Assist M. Gómez
Goal Thomas Müller
EQUALISER FOR BAYERN! Valencia's lead lasts only five minutes. Philipp Lahm volleys in a brilliant cross from the right which is inadvertently flicked by Mario Gomez into the path of Thomas Muller, who gets in front of his marker to guide the ball into the far corner of the net. Will that be the goal which sends Bayern into the knockout stages?
Jupp Heynckes is furious that his side have gone behind and throws on Mario Gomez in an attempt to salvage something from this match. Franck Ribery is the player surrendered.
Goal Sofiane Feghouli
GOALLL VALENCIA! THE 10 MEN HAVE TAKEN THE LEAD! Sofiane Feghouli has worked tirelessly today and he produces a wonderful piece of skill to feint past two Bayern defenders and his strike takes a wicked deflection of the arm of Dante and past the hapless Neuer, who was wrong-footed. Fantastic spirit shown by Pellegrino's side. The Mestalla erupts.
The home crowd are screaming for a red card when Dante pushes Guardado in back but Howard Webb gives the Brazilian defender a warning.
There is a stoppage in play as Daniel Parejo receives treatment. It seems that he may have pulled a muscle and he will not be able to continue. Jonas strips off on the touchline.
It's all hands to the pump for Valencia at the moment and they nearly fall behind when Alaba crosses low for Mandzukic but the ball just evades the Croatian striker's outstretched leg and rolls to safety.
WHAT A MISS! The two substitutes combine when Shaqiri whips in a teasing cross towards Mandzukic but the Croatian striker, who is unmarked in front of goal, somehow nods wide.
Javi Martinez tries his luck with a left-footed drive from the edge of the box but he cannot keep his effort down and it flies over the crossbar.
Jupp Heynckes is clearly disappointed with his side's failure to break down the Valencia defence and responds by introducing Xherdan Shaqiri and Mario Mandzukic in place of Toni Kroos and Claudio Pizarro. Can they prove the key to breaking the deadlock?
Ribery nearly brings the game to life when his clever reverse pass finds Muller in the box, but the German's feeble effort is comfortably saved by Guaita.
IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN 1-0! Daniel Parejo splits the Bayern defence with an incise through-ball and with only Neuer to beat, Soldado inexplicably fires his effort wildly over the crossbar. What a chance for the 10 men to take the lead!
SO CLOSE FOR VALENCIA! Andres Guardado whips in a corner from the left which Neuer completely misjudges, allowing Cissokho to nip in, but his header glances narrowly wide of the post. Let-off for Neuer.
Bayern are really pushing for an opener now and Valencia have Guaita to thank as the 25-year-old goalkeeper produces a crucial save to prevent Ribery's cross from being turned in by Muller.
Cissokho to the rescue again! Thomas Muller finds space on the right side of the box but his low cross, aimed for the run of Pizarro, is well spotted by Cissokho who clears.
Crucial header from Cissokho! Bastian Schweinsteiger delivers an accurate cross to the back post where Thomas Muller looks set to head past Guaita, but the French left-back produces a timely interception to keep his side level.
Dante gets his head to yet another corner but cannot divert it on target and another chance goes begging. Down the other end, Feghouli spots the run of Soldado with a clever cross and the Valencia no.9 forces Neuer into a smart stop at his near post.
Both sides are lacking that killer pass at the moment as Tino Costa and Philipp Lahm lose possession cheaply in dangerous areas. Who can provide that piece of genius to fire this game into life?
Feghouli finds Soldado in the box with a pinpoint lofted pass but with his back to goal, the Spanish international cannot get the ball out from his feet and the move breaks down.
Bayern are enjoying the lion's share of possession at the beginning of this second half and Kroos nearly finds Pizarro with an inviting cross but Rami reads the danger superbly and heads clear.
Bayern start the second half brightly as Alaba forces Feghouli to concede a corner. However, Kroos' set-piece fails to beat the first man and the ball is cleared upfield.
Let's hope for some goals in this second half period. Before tonight's round of matches, both Valencia and Bayern were among the tournament's top scorers in the competition with ten goals apiece.
What are your thoughts on that first half? Let me know via Twitter @MaxBentley1.
HALF TIME. VALENCIA 0 - 0 BAYERN. The Bavarian side have looked the more dangerous in the opening period and Valencia's task was made even more difficult when Antonio Barragan's rash tackle on David Alaba resulted in Howard Webb brandishing the red card. Mauricio Pellegrino's side ended the half strongly despite their numerical disadvantage but you feel that it will be a long second half for the home side.
45' + 1'
Yellow Card Javi Martínez
Sofiane Feghouli produces a wonderful bit of individal skill to jink past two Bayern players before being brought down by Javi Martinez. The former-Athletic Bilbao midfielder duly receives a caution.
Valencia have surprisingly looked more threatening since going behind and Soldado's clever backheel sets up Feghouli inside the box, but his curling left-footed effort flashes just over the bar. Pellegrino will be happy with the way his side have responded to Barragan's dismissal.
Roberto Soldado tries his luck from the edge of the box but slices his effort high and wide of Neuer's goal.
This Bayern defence has proved impermeable so far and they are once again well-organised to head the corner clear.
Valencia launch a rare attack down the left with Cissokho and his deflected cross loops awkwardly, forcing Neuer to backpeddle and concede a corner.
Bayern continue to probe at the Los Che defence and Thomas Muller lets fly from 25 yards but his effort is smartly saved by Guaita. Can Valencia hold on until the break?
Franck Ribery has looked dangerous in patches tonight and he nearly sets Pizarro clear with an dinked outside-of-the-foot pass but the danger is well anticipated by Rami.
Red Card Barragán
Antonio Barragan receives his marching orders with a straight red card for a wild, reckless tackle on David Alaba. His studs were raised, giving Howard Webb no option but to brandish the card. Valencia were struggling with eleven men, how will they cope with ten?
MUCH BETTER FROM VALENCIA! Soldado does excellently to control a long ball from the defence, shifting inside Badstuber and striking at goal. Alaba does excellently to block the shot but it rebounds into the path of Feghouli whose low drive is parried by Neuer before it is eventually cleared.
Valencia are looking very devoid of ideas at the moment and Soldado is tracking back excellently to help his side defend. Bastian Schweinsteiger and Javi Martinez have done an excellent job in breaking up play in the midfield.
Valencia break down the left-hand side with Cissokho but with plenty to aim for in the box, the former-Lyon defender fails to beat the first man with his cross and sees the ball unfortunately ricochet back off him for a Bayern throw.
Yellow Card Dante
Dante is the first Bayern man in the book after he hauls down Roberto Soldado.
Holger Badstuber's terrific diagonal pass sets up another Bayern attack but Toni Kroos' cross cannot quite reach Claudio Pizarro and the move breaks down. Bayern have struggled to get the ball to their Peruvian talisman so far, with the main threat coming down the wings.
Valencia enjoy a short spell of possession in an attempt to stem the Bayern tide but they are still yet to test Manuel Neuer. Los Che just lacking that creative spark at the moment.
Bayern force their fifth corner of the match when Aly Cissokho diverts Lahm's cross behind but the Valencia defence are first to the setpiece this time and clear the danger.
Yellow Card Barragán
Antonio Barragan receives the first caution of the game for a nasty challenge which leaves Franck Ribery writhing on the turf.
Dante rises highest once again from the corner but the Brazilian's header is excellently clawed away by Guaita. Bayern are certainly looking the most likely to open the scoring here.
SO CLOSE FROM BAYERN! Franck Ribery produces a sublime chip over the Valencia defence, looking for the run of Philipp Lahm but Ricardo Costa gets a crucial toe on the ball to divert it behind for a corner.
Thomas Muller wins a freekick in a dangerous area outside the Valencia penalty area, but Alaba's fierce attempt rises high over the crossbar.
Valencia have the ball in the net but it will not count. Andres Guardado delivers a freekick deep into the Bavarian box and Howard Webb adjudges that Rami is fouling Badstuber, to the frustration of Ricardo Costa who produces an impressive acrobatic volley which flies past Neuer.
Valencia are having to defend very deeply at the moment and they are struggling to hold onto the ball when they are in possession. David Alaba whips in a teasing cross from the left but it is expertly cleared by Adil Rami.
Bayern attack in numbers and when the ball is played out wide to Thomas Muller, he has red shirts to aim for in the box but contrives to wastefully overhit his cross for a goalkick.
Bayern are starting to dictate possession in midfield with David Alaba a willing attacking outlet from left-back. The Austrian forces a corner and from the resulting set-piece Dante heads narrowly wide.
Franck Ribery forces the first save of the match when he bursts down the left and whips in a cross aimed at Claudio Pizarro but Guaita is off his line quickly to punch the ball clear.
Both sides are keen to get the ball down on this smooth Mestalla surface and push forward, however neither goalkeeper has yet been tested.
Roberto Soldado nearly takes advantage of a slip by Holger Badstuber but the German defender does well to recover. Both sets of fans are in fine voice in the early stages.
Valencia get this Champions League encounter underway!
The teams emerge from the tunnel and the Champions League anthem echoes around the Mestalla. The captains, Roberto Soldado and Philipp Lahm exchange handshakes in the centre circle. Tonight's referee is Howard Webb, who officiated the 2010 World Cup final.
The last and only time Valencia beat Bayern in a European match was a 3-0 Uefa Cup win back in 1996. The German side are unbeaten in their last five meetings against their Spanish opponents.
BAYERN (4-2-3-1): Neuer; Lahm, Dante, Badstuber, Alaba; Martinez, Schweinsteiger; Muller, Kroos, Ribery; Pizarro.
VALENCIA (4-2-3-1): Guaita; Cissokho, Rami, R.Costa, Barragan; Parejo, T.Costa; Feghouli, Guardado, Banega; Soldado.
Without further ado, here are tonight's lineups...
By virtue of Lille's 2-0 victory over Bate Borisov earlier this evening, Valencia have qualified for the knockout stages regardless of tonight's result. In saying that, surely Mauricio Pellegrini will be looking for the three points which would all but seal top spot. Bayern can progress to the knockout stages with a draw.
Tonight marks a repeat of the 2001 Uefa Champions League final as both Valencia and Bayern Munich search for the three points which will take them to the top of group F. On that famous occasion eleven years ago, Bayern triumphed 5-4 in a penalty shootout courtesy of Mauricio Pellegrino's missed spotkick. Now Valencia manager, Pellegrino will be seeking personal vengeance by inflicting defeat on Jupp Heynckes' Bavarian outfit. Bringing you all the action from the Mestalla, my name is Max Bentley. Feel free to let me know your thoughts and predictions on the match via Twitter @MaxBentley1.
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