Created on 29-01-2008 at 00:00 AM
Bayern are through to the DFB Cup quarter-finals after class finally told against plucky Wuppertal in a tie featuring an hour of rip-roaring action.
The 61,482 capacity crowd at the Veltins Arena in Gelsenkirchen were treated to roistering entertainment in a high-tempo first period, Miroslav Klose heading the Bundesliga leaders into an early lead only for Tobias Damm to equalise with a deflected shot on 26 minutes.
Munich raced up the other end and Klose restored the advantage within 60 seconds, but the third division outfit were level again just two minutes later when Mahir Saglik blasted home from a suspiciously offside position.
Controlled second half
Whatever Ottmar Hitzfeld said at half-time clearly had the desired effect as recalled Daniel Van Buyten and deadly hitman Luca Toni put Bayern in the driving seat at 4-2 just seven minutes after the restart.
The double whammy finally took the wind out of the underdogs' sails and the 13-times winners were coasting by the end, sub Hamit Altintop setting the seal on a highly professional second half performance two minutes from time.
Van Buyten for Demichelis
Ottmar Hitzfeld had one minor selection surprise up his sleeve for the first competitive fixture after the six-week mid-season break, introducing Daniel van Buyten alongside Lucio at centre-half in place of Martin Demichelis.
The visitors otherwise lined-up as expected, with Willy Sagnol reclaiming his customary right-back berth, and Jose Ernesto Sosa winning the battle with Bastian Schweinsteiger and Hamit Altintop for the midfield slot ahead of the France star.
Ze Roberto and Mark van Bommel lined up in central midfield with Philipp Lahm and Franck Ribery on the left flank, all aiming to provide a decent service to Luca Toni and Klose up front.
Kick-off was delayed by 15 minutes as a good proportion of the vast crowd found themselves caught out by the heavy traffic around the Arena, but the third division leaders were anything but overawed by the occasion and had marginally the better of a bright opening.
The boisterous WSV fans fell silent when Klose rose majestically to nod home Ribery's 14th minute corner, and Toni, Van Bommel and Ze Roberto all came close as the top flight side assumed easy control.
Nothing could have prepared the crowd for the breathless entertainment that was to come in a four-minute spell after the 26th minute when Damm's shot took a wicked deflection to leave Kahn wrong-footed and level the scores against the run of play.
The Wuppertal fans were still celebrating when keeper Christian Maly fumbled a high Sosa cross into the box, Klose reacting first and keeping his cool to slot into the empty net, but Bayern's relief was short-lived as Saglik stole in behind the defence to slam Andre Wiwerink's flick past Kahn from close range with 29 minutes played.
The action calmed a little after the flurry of goals, and although Toni came close as Bayern made the stronger finish to the half, the sides turned round with the score deadlocked at 2-2.
Bayern emerged from the dressing room bristling with determination and the second half was only four minutes old when Van Buyten rose unchallenged to flick a neat header past Maly from Ribery's cross and hand his side the lead for the third time.
Toni forced home from close range at the second attempt after an almighty scramble in front of Maly just three minutes later to open a two-goal cushion, and the Bavarians finally had the breathing space they needed.
The Reds engaged cruise control now as the third division side, mindful of an arduous promotion campaign ahead, focused their attention on damage limitation. Wiwerink hacked a loose ball off the line and Lucio forced a decent save out of Maly on 66 minutes, before Sosa and Ribery gave way to Altintop and Schweinsteiger as Hitzfeld began planning for Friday's Bundesliga restart.
Toni Kroos came on for Ze with 15 minutes remaining as Altintop planted a shot into the side netting and Klose drove across goal, before the Turkey international made it an ultimately emphatic margin of victory shortly before full time.
Chris Hamley reporting from the Veltins Arena for fcbayern.de