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“It wasn’t any old victory for us”: Match reactions to Bayern Munich’s Pokal victory against RB Leipzig

Another fairytale comes to a beautiful end!

26 May 2019, Bavaria, Munich: Goalkeeper Manuel Neuer of FC Bayern Munich celebrates the German Football Championship and the DFB Cup victory on the balcony of the town hall at Marienplatz.
Celebrate good times!
Photo by Sven Hoppe/picture alliance via Getty Images

The DFB Pokal final of 2019 was indeed a game to remember for the several hundreds of traveling fans who were present at the Olympiastadion to witness Franck Ribéry, Arjen Robben and Rafinha tie their boots for Bayern Munich one last time! A sublime finish from Kingsley Coman in the 78th minute, a brace from Robert Lewandowski, and Manuel Neuer's insane reflexes made sure that Ralf Rangnick's men kept a safe distance from the title.

A few months ago, when not even a single title was guaranteed, many people doubted whether Niko Kovac could turn things around. However, things took a positive turn and here we are — #DoubleSeiger! The post-match celebrations showed us how the fans feel about the coach. Evidently, they have his back. We could see a proud Kovač enjoying the scene as the players were celebrating with the trophy near the stands. The coach said after the match:

Leipzig were tough opponents as expected. They’ve enjoyed a very good second half of the season, you saw that especially in the first 30 minutes. Then we relieved the pressure a bit, and Manu kept the scores level twice. But taken altogether it was a deserved victory. FC Bayern will surely celebrate a lot today. We rewarded ourselves for our work and all we’ve invested.

With the exception of the hapless ending to the Champions League title race, Bayern Munich had a commendable season. Robert Lewandowski, who was one of the many catalysts behind this successful season, thinks exactly so. He said (via FCBayern):

We had just one aim today, the cup triumph. I’m very, very pleased that we played really well and achieved a clear-cut victory. Apart from Leipzig’s two chances in the first half, we were always in control, and we scored goals in the second half. Of course the cup triumph is also a farewell gift for Franck, Arjen and Rafinha. At the end of the day it’s just been a very good season.

Robbery was beyond a sensation. As much as it feels good to have sent the legends off with two titles, it will take some time for at least some fans to wrap their heads around the fact that an era just came to an end. Both Robben and Ribéry were emotional and found it hard to stand in front of the fans for one final time. Robben said (via Kicker):

It’s worth very, very much, another farewell with the Double. It’s pure joy that it worked. Tonight we’ll celebrate with the team; afterwards... I think you now have to see honestly that it’s the end, that it’s all over. And that will take perhaps a few days

Ribéry, one of the finest and most successful players in the history of the club, has left a mark in Munich and no matter how many years pass, his legacy will live on:

Our opponents were very good, Leipzig play very good football. But we did a good job today, the team turned in a strong display. A final like this is always nice, the atmosphere is special. What we’ve achieved together will remain for a lifetime, I’ll never forget it. It’s been a great 12 years.

Bayern have clinched the domestic titles several times in the past few years but it was more special and heart-warming this time than before. Thomas Müller gave quite a good explanation on why anyone would feel that way. He said:

We gave it everything today! Congratulations to the lads. It wasn’t any old victory for us, it was very emotional! We’ve won quite a few things, but this was something special, not only because three great players are leaving us, but also because of the difficult phase during the season. To bounce back like this is stunning, it takes enormous willpower! If even I can’t think of a quip you know how important it was for me to win.

The front office is really content with the team's performance in the Rückrunde. Rising up from the sixth position to win the league and securing the Pokal title have to be appreciated. Karl Heinz Rummenigge believes that Bayern delivered an amazing performance and scored some world class goals on Sunday. He said,

German champions last week, cup winners today: it couldn’t have gone any better. The team did a great job today. We scored world-class goals, and then we had Manuel Neuer at the back, a giant who deservedly features between the posts for the national team. You can’t play any better.

Leipzig played their first Pokal final on Sunday and the players and the coach are, obviously, disappointed about the result. Yussuf Poulsen commented,

It’s a bitter day. We did really well in phases, but we didn’t capitalize on our chances and luck was also not on our side. If you don’t capitalize on your few chances against Bayern, you leave the pitch as the loser. We deserved it; we conceded too much.

Peter Gulacsi thinks that Bayern deserved the victory and said that they had several chances but failed to alter the scoreline in their favour:

We turned in a good display for 30 minutes, we should have taken the lead but didn’t make the most of our chances. It was a difficult match for us then. Bayern used the space well and created a lot of chances thanks to their quality. That’s why they won deservedly.

Last but not the least, RB Leipzig congratulated Bayern Munich on Twitter after the Cup final. Good sportsmanship from Die Bullen!

Vielen Dank for an amazing season!

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