Louis van Gaal warned his Bayern Munich side that they would not get away with so “many individual errors” in the next round after edging past Fiorentina on the away goals rule.
“Under those circumstances [the strong winds] we played some good football, but made too many individual mistakes, especially at the back,” said the Dutch coach. “It was not easy for us in this weather, but wasn’t easy for Fiorentina either.
“We should have used the space better in the last ten minutes and really, we performed better than a 3-2 defeat suggests. But we made too many individual errors, which made life difficult.”
Van Gaal praised the performance of Franck Ribery, although he was critical of the French playmaker’s failure to track back for Fiorentina’s second goal.
“Franck Ribéry put in a strong performance in the second half but for the second goal he did not mark his opponent,” he said.
“He played a big part in that success by brilliantly setting up our first goal. But today, we have also seen what we are still lacking. We have to improve on that. We can play a dominant game, but we did not do so over 90 minutes today, the way we should. But we are through, and in the end that’s what counts.”
Cesare Prandelli was left to ponder how his Fiorentina team managed to win six out of the eight Champions League games and still get eliminated on away goals.
“I have always said that when we have a full squad available we can do great things,” said Prandelli. “We have only had problems [this season] when we have had a crisis with injuries. Vargas was injured but showed great spirit to play and score anyway. We are out of the competition despite winning six games out of eight and facing teams superior to us on paper.
“We should really have defended better after twice taking a two-goal lead; most likely [Bayern’s] experience at this level made the difference. I congratulated and thanked the whole team as I could not have asked for more tonight. I’m proud of what we achieved in the Champions League this term.”