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Pep Guardiola exits Bayern Munich without a Champions League win


Following Bayern Munich's Champions League semi-final elimination at the hands of Atletico Madrid, Pep Guardiola will end his three-year stay in Bavaria without winning the trophy. Here's where it went wrong for the Catalan coach...

Guardiola arrived in Bavaria having won the Champions League twice as a coach with Barcelona and with Bayern having just won the competition in 2013, he was expected to add to that tally.

Draw sends Atletico through
Draw sends Atletico through

Atletico Madrid's 2-1 reverse away to Bayern Munich was enough to take them through on away goals.

However, while overseeing a period of domestic dominance in Germany and developing one of the most free-flowing teams on the continent, Guardiola fell short at the semi-final stage in all three of his seasons in charge…

2013/14 - Lost to Real Madrid 5-0 on aggregate

Guardiola enjoyed success against Real Madrid during his reign at Barcelona, but his Bayern side were picked off by Carlo Ancelotti's men over two legs. It was a surprise result that ultimately set the tone for Guardiola's Champions League experience with the club.

Image: Real Madrid defeated Bayern Munich 5-0 on aggregate in the 2014 semi-final

Bayern had retained the Bundesliga title as early as March, having won 25 of their first 27 league games and drawn the other two. But the dip came at the wrong time and they went into the semi-final in less fluent form. It proved costly.

Guardiola's side were unable to raise themselves to their earlier levels and Real punished them ruthlessly from a variety of set-pieces and counter-attacks. Lax in defence and sterile in attack, the 5-0 aggregate scoreline was an emphatic reflection of Real's superior cutting edge.

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2014/15 - Lost to Barcelona 5-3 on aggregate

Twelve months on against former club Barcelona, things weren't much better. Jupp Heynckes' Bayern had demolished Barca 7-0 on aggregate at this stage in 2013 but Guardiola's attempts to be dominate in the Nou Camp were disastrous. After the home team wasted a number of good chances, Bayern were eventually beaten 3-0 in the first leg.

Neymar celebrates after scoring Barcelona's equaliser against Bayern Munich
Image: Neymar and the rest were too strong for Bayern Munich in last year's semi-final

"To go three versus three at the back, we were saying 'brave' but it was madness to go up against that front three," Jamie Carragher told Sky Sports. "Barca could have had the game wrapped up so early." Jamie Redknapp added: "I thought it was footballing suicide."

Bayern did win the second leg 3-2 in front of their own fans but that merely glossed over the gulf between the teams given that Barcelona scored twice early to leave their opponents needing six on the night to progress. For a second year in a row, Guardiola's only consolation was to lose to the eventual winner.

2015/16 - Lost to Atletico Madrid 2-2 on away goals

Despite these semi-final defeats, Bayern started as favourites for the tie and the tournament in the last four in 2016 but were beaten once again - this time on away goals by yet another Spanish side in Atletico Madrid.

MADRID, SPAIN - APRIL 27:  Saul Niguez of Atletico Madrid beats David Alaba, Arturo Vidal and Juan Bernat of Bayern Munich as he scores
Image: Saul Niguez scored the winner in the Calderon and his goal proved significant

Unable to find a way past Atletico in the Vicente Calderon, with a stunning goal by Saul Niguez the difference between sides, the failure to score away from home proved costly. "We didn't win even one battle," bemoaned Guardiola afterwards.

In Munich, the comeback looked on when Xabi Alonso scored in the first half, but Thomas Muller's penalty was saved and Bayern were later caught out by Antoine Griezmann's second-half breakaway.

Ultimately, there was no way back and it confirmed that Guardiola's three seasons with Bayern have yielded three semi-final exits in the Champions League.

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