Created on 06-12-2016 at 22:45 PM by Redaktion
FC Bayern made it a remarkable 15 straight wins at home in the Champions League with a victory in their final group stage match for this season, downing Atlético Madrid 1-0 at the Allianz Arena on Tuesday evening. Robert Lewandowski scored the opener that turned out to be the match-winner before the half-hour, curling a glorious free-kick into the top corner of the net and ensuring honours remained even between two big guns of the European game - the Spaniards won the reverse fixture by the same score in the early autumn.
Bayern lined up with Manuel Neuer between the sticks behind a back four featuring Rafinha, Mats Hummels, David Alaba and Juan Bernat. Renato Sanches, Thiago and Arturo Vidal took up station in midfield, with Arjen Robben and Douglas Costa out wide looking to serve orthodox centre-forward Lewandowski.
Carlo Ancelotti made five changes to the XI that saw off Mainz on Friday. Reverting to the more familiar 4-3-3 formation, Rafinha and Bernat came in at full back with Alaba moving into the centre next to Hummels. Sanches, Vidal and Costa took over from captain Philipp Lahm, Franck Ribéry and Thomas Müller. Joshua Kimmich, Müller and Javi Martínez replaced Robben, Lewandowski and Costa in the closing stages.
The 71,000 capacity crowd who braved below-zero temperatures and dense fog at the Allianz Arena saw Bayern dominate possession, but the first two chances fell to the visitors. Yannick Carrasco tested Neuer from 15 yards eight minutes into the contest and again from ten yards on the quarter-hour. Bayern soon replied, with Costa forcing visiting netminder Jan Oblak into a fine save.
With Atlético's notoriously stubborn defence as strong as ever, it was no surprise that the opener came from a set-piece. Shortly before the half-hour Atlético gave away a free-kick 20 yards from goal. Up stepped Lewandowski and unleashed a sumptuous drive into the top corner, leaving Oblak powerless to react. Atlético upped the pace in search of an equaliser, but failed to create anything of attacking note.
After the interval the German record champions tried to double the lead from long distance, most notably through Costa and Vidal. Midway through the second half Oblak beat the galloping Lewandowski to a pass before Thiago missed a gilt-edged chance, firing a Costa cross over the bar. A second goal refused to come for Bayern, and with Atlético's attacking unit toothless on the night it was match official Clément Turpin who closed out the match for Bayern with the final whistle.
The result means the Bundesliga champions have 12 points from six matches and finish second in Group D behind Atlético. The last time Bayern failed to win their Champions League group was in the 2009/10 season, but Munich went on to make it to the final later in the same season. The Reds are back in action on Saturday, when they entertain crisis club VfL Wolfsburg in the Bundesliga.
Live match report for fcbayern.com by Gregor Salmen
FC Bayern - Atlético 1-0 (H-T: 1-0)
Neuer - Rafinha, Hummels, Alaba, Bernat - Sanches, Thiago, Vidal - Robben (Kimmich 83), Lewandowski (Müller 80), Costa (Martínez 87)
Ulreich, Lahm, Badstuber, Ribéry
Oblak - Vrsaljko, Godin, Savic, Lucas - Saúl Ñíguez, Gabi, Koke (Partey 68), Gaitan (Correa 60) - Griezmann, Carrasco (Gameiro 60)
Moya, Torres, Juanfran, Giménez
Clément Turpin (France)
|Goals||1-0 Lewandowski (28)|
- / Gabi (62)