Nürnberg - Despite uncharateristically struggling to assert themselves during the opening exchanges of their derby against 1. FC Nürnberg on Saturday, FC Bayern München still managed to extend their record-breaking unbeaten streak to 45 games with a 2-0 win.
In the starting line-up for the first time since the start of the Rückrunde was Dutch international Arjen Robben, who provided a regular threat in the final third for the record titleholders, constantly proving a thorn in the side of Nürnberg left-back Marvin Plattenhardt.
Speaking after the final whistle, the 30-year-old discussed the condition of Nürnberg’s pitch, the ‘unbeatable’ tag being placed on FC Bayern and why he’s looking forward to facing Hamburger SV in midweek.
Question: Arjen Robben, Bayern have once again emerged victorious, but it didn’t necessarily look like that would be the case early on. Why was that?
Robben: Nürnberg got off to an incredibly strong start and it definitely crossed my mind that today was going to be difficult. It was very hectic and we didn’t have as much control on proceedings as we’re used to.
Question: How did the team get to grips with the encounter?
Robben: We rose to the challenge and got stuck into the tackles more. With our world-class goalkeeper and a strong team performance we were able to come through that phase of the game unscathed. Breaking the deadlock helped us a lot. After that we were able to control the match.
Question: In the build-up there was a lot of talk surrounding the poor condition of the pitch. What were your impressions of it over 90 minutes?
Robben: It was more like a field than a pitch. They must have sent the groundskeeper on holiday. It wasn’t fun at all and certainly hindered our preferred style of play. For us though, that kind of thing can never be used as an excuse.
Question: FC Bayern are now in the midst of a 45-game unbeaten streak in the Bundesliga. How long can this record-breaking run go on for?
Robben: Records are of no interest to us, all we want to do is win our matches. We don't think about how many games we’ve won in a row or how long it’s been since our last defeat. Nothing is handed to us on a silver platter and it’s up to us to continue working hard for our success.
Question: Can FC Bayern actually be beaten in the current Bundesliga campaign?
Robben: We’ll suffer defeat again at some point. With every passing victory, the risk of losing increases. It won’t be a huge travesty for us though and definitely won’t throw us off our stride.
Question: Next up is a DFB Cup encounter against Hamburger SV. What are you feelings about the upcoming match?
Robben: Personally I’m really looking forward to seeing Bert van Marwijk and Rafael van der Vaart again, but in terms of the team, playing in the knockout rounds of a cup competition is a nice change of pace for us. It’s a one-off match that has to produce a winner one way or another. Anything can happen in games likes that. We’re going to have to be fully focused and can’t afford to show any signs of weakness. If we do that then there’s no chance of us losing in Hamburg.