Record-breaking Bayern dominate in 2013

16 December 2013 10:02

European champions Bayern Munich begin the quest for their first Club World Cup title on Tuesday having dominated German football in 2013 and finished the year unbeaten in the Bundesliga.

The Bavarian giants' 3-1 win at home to Hamburg on Saturday means they finish with a new record 93 Bundesliga points for a calendar year and were unbeaten in the German league in 2013.

The victory also extended the Champions League winners' unbeaten record in the Bundesliga to 41 games, dating back to October 2012.

They launch their Club World Cup campaign in Morocco against China's Asian champions Guangzhou Evergrande FC in Tuesday's semi-finals for a place in Saturday's final.

"2013 has been an unbelievable year for FC Bayern, now we fly to Morocco and try to win our next title," said coach Pep Guardiola.

Despite losing 3-2 at home to Manchester City last Tuesday, Bayern still finished top of their group to progress to the last 16 of the Champions League as they look to defend the title they won at Wembley in May.

The Bavarians run to the 2013 final included a 7-0 drubbing of Barcelona on aggregate in the semi-finals as Bayern became the first German side to win the treble of European, league and cup titles under Jupp Heynckes.

Under Heynckes, Bayern set 25 Bundesliga records including the most points (91) and fewest goals conceded (18 over the 34 matches) and show no sign on faltering under new boss Guardiola.

Having returned from his year-long sabbatical in New York after winning 14 titles in four years at Barcelona, Guardiola took charge of Bayern in June.

Midfielders Thiago Alcantara and Mario Goetze were added to their star-studded squad for this season as Guardiola has brought his own version of Barcelona's tiki-taka football to Bavaria.

Bayern now enjoy around 75 percent possession in most league games and humbled Werder Bremen 7-0 in north Germany ten days ago.

Guardiola picked up his first title with Bayern in August's UEFA Super Cup when Chelsea were beaten in Prague as the Spaniard enjoyed his eighth win in 16 matches against his rival Jose Mourinho, the former Real Madrid manager.

The Bavarians extracted penalty shoot-out revenge after Chelsea had beaten them on spot-kicks to lift the 2012 Champions League title at Munich's Allianz Arena.

With the holders through to the German Cup quarter-finals and having reached the Champions League's knock-out stage, Bayern are on course to defend all three titles they won last season.

Guardiola has yet to have his full squad available with the likes of stars Javi Martinez, Thiago, Goetze, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Arjen Robben having all spent time on the sidelines recovering from injuries.

Having beaten Bundesliga rivals Borussia Dortmund 2-1 at Wembley in May's first all-German Champions League final, the Germans are again flying the flag in Europe with another first.

After Dortmund, Bayer Leverkusen and Schalke joined Munich in qualifying for the knock-out phase, Germany will have four teams in the Champions League's knock-out stages for the first time in 2014.

At international level, Germany have drawn Portugal, Ghana and the United States Group G at Brazil 2014 with the Germans amongst the favourites to claim their fourth World Cup title having finished third in at South Africa 2010.

The Germans' attacking prowess is undeniable with the likes of Goezte alongside Arsenal's Mesut Ozil, Bayern's Thomas Mueller and Dortmund's Marco Reus.

But their defence, traditionally Germany's strength, has repeatedly come under fire in 2013.

A weakened Germany crashed to a 4-3 defeat to the USA, coached by ex-Germany boss Jurgen Klinsmann, in Washington in June, then fought back from 2-0 down for a 3-3 draw at home to lowly Paraguay in August.

The Germans rounded up their Brazil 2014 qualifying campaign with a 5-3 win over Sweden in Stockholm to finish with nine wins from ten games, the 4-4 draw with Sweden in Berlin in October 2012 being the only blot.

Source: AFP