Created on 24-03-2012 at 00:00 AM
Bayern made light of their midweek marathon against Gladbach and moved to within two points of Bundesliga leaders Dortmund with a narrow but fully merited home win over Hannover on Saturday. Jupp Heynckes’ men were clearly the better team until heavy legs set in towards the end, but Munich showed great courage and resilience to seal the victory.
The 69,000 sell-out crowd at the Allianz Arena saw the home side invest plenty of energy and aggression against the well-organised visitors, and take a 36th-minute lead through Toni Kroos, the midfielder’s fourth goal of the campaign.
The men in red could easily have added another goal or two in a good phase running up to half-time, and Mario Gomez smacked a shot against the post straight after coming on as a 61st-minute sub, but the super striker soon found his range and doubled the lead seven minutes later. Didier Ya Konan pulled one back a quarter-hour from time as the home side finally ran out of steam, but Munich dug deep, weathered the storm and sealed a potentially crucial victory.
The result takes Bayern onto 57 points from 27 matches, cutting Dortmund’s advantage to two points and turning up the pressure prior to the league leaders’ appointment in Cologne on Sunday evening. The Reds now switch their focus to the Champions League and Wednesday’s quarter-final trip to Olympique Marseille, before returning to the bread and butter of the Bundesliga on Saturday 31 March away to Bavarian rivals Nürnberg.