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Lahm relishing tight Bundesliga title race

Philipp Lahm expects Borussia Dortmund to challenge Bayern Munich right until the end of the Bundesliga season

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Bayern Munich captain Philipp Lahm expects the Bundesliga title race to be open until the end of the season.

Pep Guardiola's Bayern hold a five-point lead over second-placed Borussia Dortmund with seven games to go and Lahm has been impressed with their rivals' performances this campaign.

"The title race will remain close right to the end, because Dortmund are playing consistently good football and give off a very solid impression," Lahm told Bayern's website.

"We have rivals who are collecting points exactly the same way we do. I have nothing against a tight title race, provided it all ends well for us.

"We have to remain focused and can't ease back at any point."

Thomas Muller has been key to Bayern's form this season, scoring 19 goals in 26 Bundesliga appearances, and Lahm was quick to praise the Germany forward.

"Muller is irreplaceable, both on the field and off it," Lahm added.

"It's important we have players who identify with the club and who recognise the whole thing is much bigger than any individual. Thomas is exactly that person.

"He's taken on more and more responsibility in recent years. That's something the team wants and he's accepted it very, very well."

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