Pep Guardiola admitted feeling the love for his Bayern Munich players after their `miraculous` 6-1 romp against ten-man Porto put them in the Champions League semi-finals.
Having needed to overturn a two-goal deficit after last Wednesday`s shock 3-1 first-leg defeat at Porto, Bayern produced a devastating first-half display to claim five goals to win the quarter-final tie 7-4 on aggregate.
Chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge told reporters: “We have seen something miraculous” after Bayern became the first side to score five goals in the opening 45 minutes of a Champions League`s knock-out game.
“At this moment, it`s easy to love my players,” beamed Guardiola.
“We played very differently to the first leg.
“We couldn`t have achieved what we have without a fight.
“Many thanks to my players: they have made me very happy.”
The excitement at the Allianz Arena clearly got to Guardiola who ended up splitting his trousers while screaming sideline instructions.
“Ah, they broke. It’s not so bad, I’ll just put on a new pair for the next game,” grinned the Spaniard.
Robert Lewandowski scored twice, and now has 22 goals in all competitions, while Thomas Mueller, Jerome Boateng and Thiago Alcantara also grabbed first-half goals.
“Many people thought we couldn’t do it, but we are FC Bayern Munich,” said Lewandowski.
“We knew we had to step on the gas, but to go five goals up at half-time is really crazy.”
Mueller is now Germany’s top scorer in Champions League history as he scored his 27th European goal.
“It couldn’t have gone better,” beamed Mueller.
“Sometimes it’s fun to play with your backs against the wall.
“We all had hopes, but no one expected that.”
Porto captain Jackson Martinez scored a consolation goal when the tempo dropped in the second half, but the guests finished with ten men when defender Ivan Marcano received a second yellow card.
Bayern’s Xabi Alonso crashed home the resulting free-kick on 88 minutes to complete the rout while Porto’s coach Julen Lopetegui was sent from the touchline in the dying stages.
Bayern are in the last four of Europe for the fourth year running.