Outstanding Bayern impress on opening day
Friday evening, sold-out crowd, Europa League winners vs. reigning league champions - the anticipation for the opening Bundesliga match between Eintracht Frankfurt and FC Bayern was enormous. But hardly any fan of the record champions would have dreamed that things would go so well for FCB. After 45 minutes, they were leading by no fewer than 5 goals to nil! In the end, head coach Julian Nagelsmann's team won 6-1. With this fabulous performance, FCB enthralled spectators and sent a direct message to their rivals at the start of their bid to win an eleventh league title in a row.
Bayern, set-piece specialists
In eagerly anticipated matches, it is often said that set pieces can be the deciding factor. On Friday evening, two such dead ball situations did it for Bayern at the start - and how! First Joshua Kimmich (5') showed his creative ingenuity to outsmart keeper Kevin Trapp, who had anticipated a cross, from almost 30 yards out. That made it 1-0 - the first direct free-kick goal the 27-year-old had scored in the Bundesliga. Only four minutes later, a corner landed eventually at the feet of Benjamin Pavard, who slammed the ball into the net. This was the defender's second goal in as many games, after his strike in the Supercup.
Nagelsmann praises his staff
That the goals were rehearsed on the training ground could be seen when the team celebrated: both Kimmich and Pavard ran to the bench. "Huge praise to Toni Tapalović and Dino Toppmöller, who's responsible for set-pieces. The tip-off [for the opener] came from Tapa and shows us we have options there. That's great work," Nagelsmann said, praising his coaching colleagues after the game. "He will have to come up with something new by next week," said goalscorer Kimmich, cheekily handing assistant coach Toppmöller a new task.
Bayern's historic first half
What followed after the two set-piece goals was pure enjoyment for every FC Bayern fan. Thomas Müller and Co. demonstrated their superiority and created numerous chances. New signing Sadio Mané with his first Bundesliga goal (29'), Jamal Musiala (35') and Serge Gnabry (43') made it 5-0 after some impressive moves. In addition, Müller, Musiala and Mané each hit the woodwork. A great first half in the first game of the new Bundesliga season and the highest lead at the break for any team on Matchday 1 in the league's history. A perfect start.
Musiala with another strong showing
In the second half, Bayern slowed the pace and Frankfurt scored through Randal Kolo Muani (64') to make it 5-1, but it was the visitors who had the final word. Musiala (83'), who was again outstanding, scored his second goal after an assist from Leroy Sané. "He scored the goal [to make it 6-1] extremely well. He has very good body control. When he gets the ball in those half-spaces, he's very difficult to catch," praised coach Nagelsmann.
Celebrations with the fans
Bayern's sixth goal was the crowning glory of a dream start to the new Bundesliga season. "I'm happy about the energy I feel in the team. It's already outstanding, that and how the players act when they celebrate with the fans after the game," said Nagelsmann. Mané climbed the fence in the corner and joined supporters in the first of what will hopefully be many Bayern celebrations this season.
The reaction to the game: