Bayern finished in force, claiming the unofficial Hinrunde champions following a 3:0 win over second place Leipzig. Thanks to an emphatic first half and numerical advantage, the Bavarians made their lives easy in the second half.
First half: majestic
Bayern had a strong start to the match, going forward right from start. Despite the Bavarians’ confidence, it was Leipzig who had the first chance (3’). A fast counter allowed Werner to go down the right and cross in low, but the sliding Poulsen was unable to reach the ball right in front of goal.
The Reds looked unfazed and continued their assault on RB’s box. With a menacing stride to their game, Bayern did not take long to open the score (17’). Robben set Lahm down the right, from where his cross was deflected by Lewandowski onto the post. The ball happily ended up in Thiago’s path all alone in front of an open goal.
With the first one out of the way, die Roten kept squeezing Leipzig and Costa, with in minutes, hit the post from just outside the box with a blistering shot after some good passing work on the right.
The pressure got to much as a mistimed passed got back to Lewandowski in a dangerous position. The Pole moved the ball to Thiago who set up Alonso’s running shot, low to the far post from an angle for the second goal (25’).
Leipzig had a gasping twitch as a corner was headed in by Orban, forcing a reflex save from Neuer that got cleared out of danger by Lewandowski.
The ensuing corner set up a textbook counter for Bayern. Lahm went charging forward, looking to set up Robben as he was flying down the pitch towards Gulácsi’s goal. With the danger of a third goal looming Forsberg made a rash decision and slid in from behind putting studs right in the back of his leg (30’). The referee took out his yellow card, but switched to a red after a brief discussion with his assistant.
It all went from bad to worse for Leipzig as Gulácsi blocked Costa at the edge of the box (44’). Lewandowski stepped up to the spot and cynically executed a by the book penalty (45’) as he send the keeper in the wrong direction.
The half ended with a deserved 3:0 advantage for Bayern, as the Bavarians put up one of their best performances of the season so far.
Second half: shifting down
With the game all but wrapped up and Robben subbed by Ribéry, Bayern looked a lot more tamed in comparison. Still the Bavarians came close to a fourth goal (52’) as Lewandowski found himself in a one-on-one with Gulácsi who managed a last second block, to the Pole’s disappointment.
Another chance for the elusive fourth (65’) as Lewandowski’s chipped shot over the keeper fell on the roof of the net, following a beautifully simple one-two with Ribéry.
Bayern slowed down the pace considerable, as they opted to dominate possession as they held on to midfield. The Reds utilised numerous low short passes and opted for long high passes to bypass the defence and through passes when needed to speed up the game when spaces opened up.
Bayern came close to scoring twice in the closing minutes of the match. First, Costa’s free kick (86’) to the far top corner was on target but was cleared by a diving save. Then Ribéry’s powerful short (88’) range shot hit the crossbar before bouncing just outside of goal.
The match shortly ended with Bayern’s clear and deserved victory.
1:0 Thiago (17’)
2:0 Alonso (25’)
3:0 Lewandowski (P) (45’)
|Bayern München||RB Leipzig|
Shots on target
Location: Allianz Arena in München
Final score: 3:0 for Bayern
Referee: Felix Zwayer
The graphical line-up was created using the Lineup11 app, while whoscored.com was used for statistical information.