Bayern can't bow to fatigue in title race: Guardiola

AFP , Friday 8 Apr 2016

Bayern Munich coach Pep Guardiola
Bayern Munich coach Pep Guardiola joined the Bavarian side in 2013 (AFP)

Bayern Munich coach Pep Guardiola insists his side can not allow fatigue to be a factor ahead of Saturday's German league game at Stuttgart in this season's title race.

Bayern have shown recent signs of tiredness in scraping through with 1-0 wins in their last three matches including Tuesday's narrow home victory over Benfica in the Champions League quarter-finals ahead of Wednesday's return leg.

Bayern head to Stuttgart for the south German derby holding a five-point lead over second placed Borussia Dortmund.

The Bavarians have won all of their last 14 meetings with Stuttgart.

Having won the 2013/2014 Bundesliga title with a record seven games to spare, Guardiola says his side can ill afford any slip-ups in this campaign with their rivals ready to exploit any points given away.

The Spaniard, who is set to rest some of his stars in Stuttgart, says the pressure from Dortmund may even be a good thing to keep his team on their toes.

"In my first year here, we were already German champions (by now), in the second year we had almost done it," said Guardiola.

"So we switched off.

"Now, in Borussia Dortmund, we have an opponent who will be champions if Munich doesn't pay attention.

"We can't afford to wait for them to make a mistake.

"We have to, we have to (keep winning). And perhaps this is good for us."

Guardiola can sign off his three years in Munich with the treble of Bundesliga, German Cup and Champions League trophies before taking over as Manchester City coach next season.

He says he wishes they already had the league title secured so they could "focus on the Champions League and German Cup" where they face Werder Bremen in ten days time for a place in the May 21 final in Berlin.

Guardiola says he will be without Dutch winger Arjen Robben for the foreseeable future as the 32-year-old recovers from the groin injury he suffered in mid-March.

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