Bayern managed to climb to the top of the Bundesliga again following a difficult away game against last-place Darmstadt. The Bavarians now have to face second-place Leipzig in the Hinrunde closing match.
First half: uneventful
The match started as expected with Bayern controlling play and possession. Darmstadt opted to line up deep at the back in order to catch the Bavarians on the counter. Meanwhile the Reds were forced to make use of numerous short passes in search of spaces through the tightly packed and over numeric blue defence.
It didn’t take long for the match to settle into a clear rhythm with Bayern’s positional play chipping away at an eager to counter Darmstadt. A lackluster game with little to almost no goal scoring opportunities on either side of the pitch.
Bayern’s first half-a-chance (25’) came when Vidal found Müller at the edge of the box on the right. The makeshift winger’s low cross was chipped out of the path of a sliding Thiago by Lewandowski who was unable to find room to shoot before the ball was fumbled out of danger.
As the minutes went by, the game got even more bogged down in midfield with Darmstadt giving the ball away almost as soon as they got it.
Bayern’s biggest chance came right at the end (45’) as Alonso won a free-kick in a dangerous position. Lewandowski’s shot hit the roof of Darmstadt’s goal from a central and close range position effectively closing the half.
Second half: free-kick duel
Bayern looked to have started the half on better terms as Müller (48’) came close to pushing the ball in from close range following a cross, but was beaten to it Esser. It was Müller again (53’), but his powerful shot from a tight angle was deflected by Esser with ease.
The game quickly fell into the same familiar rhythm with positional play from the Reds and counters from Darmstadt. With the Bavarians looking more active in offence this time around.
Bayern came close to going down a goal (58’), but Vrancic’s free-kick went just inches wide with Neuer having no chance of getting to the ball in time.
Dodging a goal and with time slowly running out Bayern managed to open the score (71’) as Costa managed a thundering shot that bit the crossbar before going in, following a free-kick that Thiago moved for the Brazilian.
It was another free-kick almost ended in a goal (76’) as Neuer had to save twice as his initial deflection found a Darmstadt man, who was unable to head the ball in.
The match ended with a hard fought and worked victory for Bayern that spent the final minutes with their minds on the upcoming fixture against Leipzig.
0:1 Costa (71’)
|Bayern München||SV Darmstadt 98|
Shots on target
Location: Jonathan-Heimes-Stadion am Böllenfalltor in Darmstadt
Final score: 1:0 for Bayern
Referee: Bastian Dankert
The graphical line-up was created using the Lineup11 app, while whoscored.com was used for statistical information.