Tehran — Iran's supreme leader on Saturday backed President Hassan Rouhani's overtures to the West but criticised some aspects of...
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Bayern Munich had to go through the playoffs to qualify for the tournament proper, and it did so by dispatching FC Zurich 3-0 on aggregate. There were more hurdles to come for the Bavarians as they were drawn into Group A, labeled the 'Group of Death'. But they swept past their two closest rivals at home, beating Manchester City 2-0 and Napoli 3-2, and a double over Villarreal coupled with a draw at San Paolo against the Partenopei confirmed their place at the top of the section. A 2-0 loss at City on matchday six when they had already qualified as group winners was their only blemish. The trend of overcoming obstacles continued for Jupp Heynckes' side after it crashed to a 1-0 defeat at Basel in the first leg of the last 16. But the German team responded in style in the home game, annihilating the Swiss outfit 7-0 to record the biggest single game margin of victory in the knockout phase of the Champions League. There were to be no more shocks in the quarterfinals as the Germans swept past Marseille 4-0 on aggregate to move another step towards the final at the Allianz Arena.
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