United manager rues missed chances in 1-1 draw but backs his players to score away goal in return leg in the Allianz Arena
David Moyes, the Manchester United manager, backed his side to finish off Bayern Munich and claim a Champions League semi-final place after one of his most encouraging nights since arriving at Old Trafford last summer.
United will need a heroic performance to get through after a 1-1 draw with at Old Trafford, but they will be buoyed by a gutsy display against the European champions.
Nemanja Vidic’s header was cancelled out by Bastian Schweinsteiger, but the German midfielder was later sent off and will miss the second leg.
Bayern defender Javi Martínez is also suspended for the return game, while United will welcome back three of their back four in Germany.
“There was a real determination to make sure that we did well,” said Moyes, who insisted his side have a “fighting chance” in the Allianz Arena next Wednesday.
“This performance is more what you would hope for from us and we’ll try and take that into the game next week. We’ve given ourselves a great opportunity. We know that we have to score a goal because if the score stays the same then Bayern go through so we have to do something about it.
“We said that we need to have something going into the next leg and I think we’ve done that. I’m happy with the performance, but a bit disappointed with result in the end. We could have taken one of the other chances we had. There was a great chance for Danny Welbeck, but it was very good goalkeeping. He stood up. At this level, you have to be clinical.
“We’ll be there, we’ll go toe to toe with them and try and come out on top. It’s a tough game but our best football has come in this competition and we’ll try and show it next week. I always felt we could score a goal against them and I’ll go to Munich believing we can score a goal.
“Most people had Bayern favourites for the game and rightly so. They are the European champions. But this club is used to big nights in Europe and they showed it off the field and on the field as well.”
The game’s contentious moment was the red card for Bayern’s inspirational midfielder Schweinsteiger. Pep Guardiola confronted Spanish referee Carlos Carballo after Schweinsteiger received a second yellow card for tripping Wayne Rooney.
“I think Schweinsteiger trips Wayne up. It’s a booking or at least a foul,” said Moyes.
Guardiola was not convinced and made a diving gesture with his hand moments after the incident. “I gave my opinion to the referee. It is unfair,” Guardiola said. “But this is football. You need to overcome obstacles.”
Although Guardiola pointed to several chances for his side, United goalkeeper David De Gea was not especially busy. Nevertheless, the Germans were more satisfied with the draw. “We can talk about the result and the performance but we scored away and now we will try to decide it in Munich,” said Guardiola.
“I’m happy with the performance. It is not easy when they have nine players in the box to create chances. We had 15 attempts but we reacted well after being 1-0 down. It is not an exceptional result but it is good considering this Manchester United.
“The Manchester United fans were awesome. I hope we will have to same warmth in our stadium to get to the semi-finals.
“The people were looking see what was happening in the Premier League and Bundesliga and thought this game was for Bayern. But it’s Manchester and they are one of the best. They have a lot of experience. We knew they would make a good performance.
“We received some good options and they did not create many chances but it was not going to be easy. I am not disappointed with how my team played. Absolutely not.”
Moyes went into the game with numerous injury and suspension problems. Patrice Evra was banned, while full-back Rafael and centre-half Chris Smalling were also notable absentees.
“We were short of defenders tonight and even Alex Buttner took a knock later on,” said Moyes.
“We had to find another way in the closing stages because they have good attacking players so we will take a lot from this game. They have shown the form they are in and they were always going to be tough to play against and dominate possession.”
In the Allianz Arena it will be Guardiola with the selection dilemmas, Martínez and Schweinsteiger representing the heart of their team.
“I do not know the side I will pick yet,” said Guardiola. “I will have a glass of wine and tomorrow to think about that. It’s a pity because they are very important players for us.”