Created on 18-01-2014 at 18:00 PM
Following a 2-0 victory over Al-Merrikh and an 8-0 rout of Kuwait SC, Bayern travelled to Salzburg Arena for Saturday’s third friendly of the mid-season period but were defeated 3-0 by the lively home side. It was a less-than-welcome gift for FCB boss Pep Guardiola on his 43rd birthday as first-half goals from Sadio Mané, Jonatan Soriano from the spot and Robert Zulj for the Austrian Bundesliga leaders, who mustered 18 shots at Manuel Neuer’s goal, sealed Bayern’s first defeat since July last year. It could even have been worse for Munich but Manuel Neuer saved Kevin Kampl’s 76th-minute penalty.
Five men out with injury
In the absence of Franck Ribery (back), Philipp Lahm (knee), Arjen Robben, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Daniel van Buyten (not yet match fit), Guardiola sent out an experimental line-up featuring a back three of Javi Martinez, Dante and Jerome Boateng, with Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg alongside Toni Kroos in central midfield, David Alaba wide on the left and Thomas Müller as the lone striker.
Bulls rampant in first half
The noisy 30,188 capacity crowd saw the club world champions fashion the first chance when Götze nodded down Shaqiri’s cross only for Alaba to loft a half-volley over the bar. But Red Bull Salzburg, who lead the Austrian Bundesliga by 11 points and won all six of their Europa League group games, looked increasingly sharp and took a 15th-minute lead when Kampl recovered possession in midfield and instantly released Mané into space with a defence-splitting pass. The Senegalese striker steadied himself before side-footing past Neuer.
Coach Roger Schmidt’s men kept up the pressure and the lively Kampl left Boateng for dead before shooting too close to Neuer. At the other end Mario Götze skipped clear, but Thomas Müller was too slow to react to the former BVB man’s pass. The home side posed a permanent threat on the break and extended their lead on 20 minutes after Mané raced onto a Stefan Ilsanker pass and was fouled in the box by Dante, Red Bull skipper Soriano stepping up to beat Neuer from the spot.
Guardiola switched to a back four now with Alaba returning to left-back but the home side created the next chance on the half-hour when Andreas Ulmer found Soriano with a long pass, but Kampl and Mané came up inches short in the centre. FCB’s best opening arrived when Alaba picked out Müller in the penalty area, but Xherdan Shaqiri was caught by surprise by the German international’s lay-off. Overall the visitors struggled for rhythm and conceded a third goal a minute before the break when Kampl released the speedy Mané for a dart down the right and cross to the back stick, where the unmarked Zulj netted the third with a cushioned volley.
Few chances after half-time
Mario Mandzukic and Rafinha replaced Götze and Martinez for the second half but Schmidt’s men were again first to show, the ever-dangerous Mané looping a 47th-minute header off the bar. Soriano warmed Neuer’s gloves and Mandzukic drew a first real save of the game from Salzburg keeper Péter Gulácsi, but a host of changes by Schmidt and Munich’s heavy legs meant the play frequently became bogged down in midfield.
Müller did have the ball in the net but was rightly called offside, and the men in red otherwise lacked inspiration against their disciplined opponents. It could even have been worse for the visitors when Boateng was harshly adjudged to have fouled Lazaro in rather than on the edge of the box, but Neuer saved Kampl’s 75th-minute penalty. And at the end, Alaba scraped Reyna’s shot off the line after the Red Bull sub had rounded Neuer.