Germany World Cup midfielder BASTIAN SCHWEINSTEIGER (31) of Bayern Munich looks to play the ball ahead of FC Basel’s Ivory Coast international midfielder GILLES YAPI-YOPO (10) and Switzerland World Cup midfielder BENJAMIN HUGGEL (8) at St. Jakob Park in northern Switzerland where France meets Germany. (Keystone/Blick photo)
UEFA Champions League
1 – FC Basel (SWITZ) ————— Frei 18′
2 – Bayern Munich (GER) ——— Schweinsteiger pen 56′, 89′
A pair of goals from Gemany World Cup midfielder BASTIAN SCHWEINSTEIGER, the latter coming in the dying moments of the match, enabled visiting Bundesliga champion BAYERN MUNICH to defeat neighboring Swiss side FC BASEL 2-1 and remain atop Group E of the UEFA Champions League.
FC Basel, managed by one-time West Germany U-21 international and former Bayern Munich midfielder THORSTEN FINK, took the early lead in the 18th minute after a bad pass by Bayern Munich’s Belgium international defender DANIEL VAN BUYTEN.
Quick work by a pair of Switzerland internationals, 21-year-old midfielder VALENTIN STOCKER and 29-year-old MARCO STRELLER, followed; Streller, who played three years in the Bundesliga for Vfb Stuttgart and 1.FC Koeln previously, produced a backheel which allowed Switzerland World Cup striker ALEXANDER FREI to finish with a superb curling shot past Germany World Cup reserve goalkeeper HANS-JORG BUTT.
For the 31-year-old Frei, the national team of Switzerland’s all-time leading goal-scorer (40 goals – 77 caps) who spent three seasons in the Bundesliga with Borussia Dortmund before joining FC Basel in July of a year ago, the goal was his first career in the UEFA Champions League.
A little over ten minutes into the second half, Bayern Munich pulled level when Germany World Cup attacker THOMAS MUELLER was brought down in the box by FC Basel’s Switzerland World Cup midfielder BENJAMIN HUGGEL, the former Eintract Frankfurt player who had a goal disallowed for offsides in the first half.
Schweinsteiger sent Argentina international goalkeeper FRANCO COSTANZO the wrong way with the subsequent spot kick.
Bayern Munich, who were better able to assert themselves in the second half against FC Basel, snatched a late winner when an airborne and unmarked Schweinsteiger appeared at the back post to sidefoot home the free kick of Germany World Cup reserve defender HOLGER BADSTUBER.
FC BASEL : Costanzo – Inkoom, Abraham, Ferati, Safari – Yapi Yopo (Almerares 89′), Huggel (Cabral 87′) – Shaqiri (Chipperfield 80′), Stocker – Frei, Streller
BAYERN MUNICH : Butt – Lahm, van Buyten, Badstuber, Pranjic – van Bommel, Schweinsteiger – Altintop (Gomez 46′), Mueller, Kroos (Olic 56′) – Klose (Tymoshchuk 77′)
As Bayern Munich’s Holland World Cup midfielder MARK VAN BOMMEL (17) views Germany’s World Cup reserve goalkeeper HANS-JOERG BUTT at full stretch with no chance, Switzerland international striker ALEXANDER FREI of FC Basel (left) shoots the home team ahead in the 18th minute at St. Jakob Park. (Matthias Schrader/AP)
Germany World Cup midfielder BASTIAN SCHWEINSTEIGER (far left) meets the free kick of the not-pictured Germany World Cup defender HOLGER BADSTUBER at the back post in the 89th minute for Bayern Munich against FC Basel at St. Jakob Park. (Reuters photo)
33-year-old Holland World Cup midfielder MARK VAN BOMMEL (17) has a few words for Germany World Cup midfielder BASTIAN SCHWEINSTEIGER (31) after the 26-year-old’s second goal of the game gave German meister Bayern Munich a dramatic, last-minute lead on Swiss side FC Basel at St. Jakob Park. (Reuters photo)