Thomas Muller tried to apologise in person to Nicolas Tagliafico for the challenge which saw him sent off in Bayern Munich’s Champions League thriller against Ajax on Wednesday.
Muller’s studs connected with the side of Tagliafico’s head as he tried to control a high ball in the 75th minute of the match at the Johan Cruyff Arena, leaving the Argentine international bleeding on the floor.
Referee Clement Turpin had no hesitation in producing his second red card of the night, having dismissed Ajax’s Maximilian Wöber for a dangerous challenge on Leon Goretzka earlier in the second half.
According to German journalist Jonas Austermann, Muller tried to enter the Ajax dressing room after the match to apologise to Tagliafico, only to find that the defender had already left.
Bayern manager Niko Kovac admitted that both Wöber and Muller had deserved their punishment.
“The red card for Wober was totally justified because he took on that challenge in a negligent way,” he said after the final whistle, quoted by the Metro.
“The red card for Thomas was fair as well. He didn’t see the player but you have to be aware of your opponent coming at the ball at your back. Both penalty decisions correct. Both red cards correct.”
Muller’s red card means that he will miss the first leg of Bayern’s last 16 match in February. Wednesday’s thrilling 3-3 draw meant that the German side held on to finish top of Group E ahead of their Dutch hosts.
Bayern’s possible opponents are Atletico Madrid, Tottenham, Liverpool, Lyon, Roma and Manchester United. The draw will be held next Monday.