Kroos: Dortmund defeat fired up Bayern
Bayern Munich midfielder Toni Kroos said the hurt of losing at home to German champions Borussia Dortmund made them determined to beat Villarreal and book their place in the UEFA Champions League's knock-out phase.
France winger Franck Ribery scored twice, and in-form striker Mario Gomez also got on the score sheet, as Bayern beat Villarreal 3-1 on Tuesday to go five points clear at the top of Group A.
After Napoli beat Manchester City 2-1 to go second in the table, Bayern have won the group regardless of their last game away to the Premier League leaders.
But last Saturday's German league defeat to Dortmund in Munich prompted them to make no mistakes in dealing with Villarreal, who suffered their fifth straight defeat in the group stage. "We wanted to respond immediately after the defeat against Dortmund," said Kroos, who set up both of Ribery's goals.
"We were really not happy after the match. We took advantage of a Villarreal error for our first goal, but there were phases when we let them come at us, that shouldn't be happening to us."
First target achieved for Heynckes
Bayern coach coach Jupp Heynckes admitted he was irritated when Bayern conceded a second-half goal through Villarreal midfielder Jonathan de Guzman. "It is very important to us that we have now clearly won the group," he said. "It's been a good campaign so far for us. What I didn't like was that we conceded a goal after the break and therefore had to raise our game again."
This was Bayern's fourth win in this season's European campaign with only last month's 1-1 draw at Napoli blotting their perfect record. Munich's Allianz Arena will host the final next May and the German giants have made no secret of their desire to win the Champions League for the first time since 2001.
Villarreal are now sure of elimination and even their dreams of finishing third, to secure a UEFA Europa League berth, are also dashed. "Of course, we wanted to win this game but we came across a stronger opponent," said Villarreal coach Juan Carlos Garrido. "I think we played a decent match for 90 minutes. We will emerge stronger from this game."
Bayern are under no pressure now for their final group game in Manchester on 7 December, while Villarreal will be playing just for pride the same night when they host Napoli