8.12.2016Champions League

What the papers say: 'Agile, focused, terrific'

Although the match was a dead rubber, the 3-0 win for Bayer 04 in the final Champions League group game against AS Monaco was the result of a strong performance by the Werkself – in spite of all the personnel issues. That is the assessment of the media in their reports and they also highlight the fact the Werkself are unbeaten in the group stages for the first time.
© Bayer 04 Leverkusen Fussball GmbH

The Kölner Stadt Anzeiger writes: "On a cold Wednesday night in December Bayer 04 Leverkusen completed the statistically most successful group stage of the Champions League in the club's history. A 3-0 win against AS Monaco sees the Werkself progress to the Round of 16 unbeaten for the first time.… Yurchenko was centre stage with his technique and vision. And when he ran to the edge of the opposition penalty area on the half-hour mark he was struck by a flash of genius. Just shoot! Not just aimlessly but rather with a combination of nouse, swerve and speed that saw the ball escape the fingers of the flying goalkeeper de Sanctis on its way into the top corner. Bayer 04 lead 1-0. And Yurchenko reported back as a serious option in midfield after a long period out injured."

The headline in the Kicker reads: "Bayer agile, focused, terrific." The journal’s assessment: Bayer showed their best side against the group winners and deservedly won." Julian Brandt was named man of the match: "Always at the centre of the action with great ideas, impressive passes and good runs. One goal, impressive. Julian Brandt was the best player."

"Leverkusen unbeaten into the last sixteen" is the headline in the Bild Zeitung and the report continues: "Leverkusen deservedly beat group winners Monaco 3-0 to progress to the Round of 16 as runners-up. Unbeaten for the first time in the club's history. This relatively insignificant victory brings with it a bonus of €1.5 million."

The Cologne newspaper Express reports: "Bayer boys conjure up Leverkusen victory." The report continues: "Bayer have laid down a marker in the Champions League. They conjured up a 3-0 win against AS Monaco, already through as group winners, and earned €1.5 million for the victory.… Any other highlights? Let's take a look at a wonder goal. One look. A curler. With gusto. But also a lot of feeling. From 20 yards out ball flew into the top right corner of the Monaco net. Vladlen Yurchenko (22) hoisted his arms into the night sky in Leverkusen. The injured Admir Mehmedi said ' A wonder goal from Vlad'."

The Rheinische Post view is: "When the final Champions League group game does not involve going through or resolving places then that is not normally a good sign. That's usually the end of the story. In the case of Bayer Leverkusen… It was different. The paradox for the Werkself: There was nothing more to play for in the most popular competition in club football. Regardless of the 3-0 victory, the opponents AS Monaco go through to the Round of 16 as group winners, and Bayer as runners-up. However, the Werkself could celebrate first ever win against Monaco."

© Bayer 04 Leverkusen Fussball GmbH

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