Pep Guardiola insists Bayern Munich’s shock 2-0 defeat at home to Borussia Moenchengladbach on Sunday only proves the reigning Bundesliga champions must keep fighting to defend their title.
Bayern suffered only their third defeat of the season in all competitions and their first home defeat as Gladbach’s Brazilian striker Raffael scored both of Borussia’s goals.
Guardiola’s side still command a 10-point lead at the top of the table with eight games left.
But there was more bad news for Bayern’s head coach as Dutch winger Arjen Robben was forced off in the first-half and taken to hospital with a torn stomach muscle and is expected to miss the next few weeks.
“The injury is just as painful as the defeat,” said Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge with Robben facing a race against time to be fit for their two-legged Champions League quarter-final against Porto next month.
The win lifted Lucien Favre’s Gladbach back to third in the table and it was only their third win in Munich in 47 league games, having last won at the Allianz Arena four years ago.
“They barely got into our half before they scored their first goal and it’s not easy to break down a side who pack their defence,” said Guardiola.
“We failed to break down their defence and they counter-attacked superbly, but we did all we could.
“We still have a 10-point lead, but we must fight until the end to defend our title.
“We still have eight games left and we have the chance now to regroup during the international break.”
Raffael, who turns 30 next Saturday, profited from a rare mistake by Germany goalkeeper Manuel Neuer, who failed to block the Brazilian’s long-range shot which rolled into the Munich goal with half an hour gone.
Gladbach claimed their second on 77 minutes when Germany midfielder Christoph Kramer squared for Raffael to fire his second past Neuer.
“We missed out on a chance (to extend our lead) because Wolfsburg drew, but we won’t let that spoil our mood,” lamented Neuer after second-placed Wolfsburg had been earlier held to a surprise 1-1 draw at Mainz.
Bayern’s next league game is a mouth-watering clash at resurgent Borussia Dortmund, who have finished runners-up to Munich for the last two years, on April 4. – Agence France-Presse