Muller spot-kick hands Bayern victory

Bayern Munich won 1-0 away to Lille in the UEFA Champions League today, but the scoreline barely reflected the one-sided nature of the Group F tie.

Thomas Muller's penalty after 20 minutes was the difference between the sides but Bayern made most of the running and should have won by a decidedly more comfortable margin.

Franck Ribery was given a rough ride on his return to his native northern France as first Djibril Sidibe and then Florent Balmont dragged him to the ground, but both free kicks were wasted with Mickael Landreau punching both clear.

Bayern broke the deadlock in the 20th minute when Lucas Digne clattered Philipp Lahm to the ground and despite Lille protests, referee Martin Atkinson pointed to the spot and Muller dispatched it straight past Landreau.

Lille's best chance of the half came on the half-hour as Digne crossed from the left but it sailed over the onrushing Nathan Roux and Tulio De Melo and out to safety. Ribery's involvment came to an abrupt end at half-time when he reappeared on the bench with his left thigh heavily bandaged to be replaced by Xherdan Shaqiri.

Bayern boss the game
Bayern contained Lille for long spells despite some deft approach play from the French side but the statistics showed that goakepper Manuel Neuer hardly had a save worthy of the name to make all night.

Lahm should have doubled the score for Bayern in the 69th minute as he raced on to a neat through ball but Landreau got down well to smother the ball before he could take aim.

Lille had a penalty appeal waved away in the 72nd minute when Balmont went down in the area after apparently being held back by Martinez. Muller squandered a golden opportunity with a quarter of an hour left, pushing Lahm's cross wide as he slid into the area.

In a last throw of the dice, Lille coach Rudi Garcia sent on Ryan Mendes, but the young attacker ran gamely but to little effect.