Bayern hold Liverpool, draw for Barca

BARCELONA: Bayern Munich held Liverpool to a 0-0 draw at Anfield while Barcelona and Olympique Lyon were tied in another goalless draw in Champions League last 16 first legs on Tuesday.
Liverpool shaded the first half but Bayern looked dangerous with Serge Gnabry and Kingsley Coman on the counter.
In France, Lyon came closest in a frantic first half, with Martin Terrier’s effort tipped onto the bar by Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez spurned good chances at the other end as Barcelona dominated the ball but could not break the deadlock.
Bayern Munich left Merseyside pleased with their night’s work,frustrating Liverpool in attack.
Senegalese winger Sadio Mane might have scored in the first half but fired narrowly wide, and headed off-target in the final stages too.
Bayern mopped up Liverpool pressure comfortably in the second half,albeit without threatening too much themselves either.
Given Liverpool were missing key defender Virgil van Dijk through suspension, this might go down as a missed opportunity to grab an away goal for Niko Kovac’s men.
Midfielder Fabinho partnered Joel Matip at the back but kept Robert Lewandowski quiet all night long, while Arjen Robben and Thomas Mueller were missing through injury and suspension respectively.
“We’ll need to score if we want to get into the next round. I hope we can play better at home,” said Polish striker Lewandowski, who barely touched the ball.
Bad news for the Bundesliga side came in the form of a booking for Joshua Kimmich, who will be suspended for the second leg, although Bayern will be slight favourites to progress to the quarterfinals.
“If Bayern had been full of confidence we might have had more space,” said Liverpool coach Juergen Klopp.
“Not a lot of things happened. We had our moments and in those moments you have to score.
“It was an intense game for both sides. It is not a game we will remember in 30 years. It’s the result we have and we will work with that.”
In Lyon, Barcelona took 25 shots at goal but failed to beat Anthony Lopes.
The stopper did well to deny Messi in the second half, although Suarez fired off-target when well placed.
The Uruguayan had another chance when Messi’s volley flew in his direction but he could not head the ball in from close range.
Suarez has now failed to score away from home in the Champions League for over 24 hours, last doing so in September 2015, while he has scored one goal in his last 17 matches in the competition.
Memphis Depay had the chance to earn Lyon a famous victory but fired wide in the second half, while Lopes tipped over a long range effort from Sergio Busquets.
“It was a good performance. We were keen to get a good result but we lacked the goal that would have changed the sensation of the game,” said Barcelona defender Clement Lenglet.
“It’s good to have so many chances but you have to take them. When you have so many it means you’re playing well. It was a good game, we pressed well, but we lacked that precision.”
The second legs take place on March 13. — dpa