FC Bayern beat Olympiacos 3-2 on Tuesday night, taking a big step towards the Champions League knockout stages. Youssef El-Arabi put the hosts in front midway through the first half, Robert Lewandowski levelling the scores before half-time and handing Bayern the lead after the hour mark. Sub Corentin Tolisso netted a third with a quarter-hour to go, Guilherme pulling one back. Olympiacos pushed for an equaliser in the closing stages, but Bayern weathered the storm, sealing their third victory in the third match and setting a club record of eleven consecutive Champions League away matches without defeat.
The German record champions started with Manuel Neuer in goal and Joshua Kimmich, Benjamin Pavard, Lucas Hernández and David Alaba in a back four. Thiago and Javi Martínez featured in a twin holding role behind Serge Gnabry, Philippe Coutinho and Thomas Müller, with Lewandowski as lone striker. Tolisso took over from Martínez at half-time, Jérôme Boateng coming on for Hernández, who had to be replaced with a knock, on the hour. Müller gave way to Ivan Perišić shortly before the final whistle.
Level at half-time
The 32,115 full house in Piraeus saw the two sides feel each other out at first, with Bayern in control. Coutinho warmed the gloves of keeper José Sá before Lewandowski fired over the bar. Olympiacos took the lead out of the blue when El-Arabi connected with a cross, beating Neuer at his near post.
Bayern went looking for an equaliser but struggled against the home side's dogged defending. Hernández almost put through his own goal following an Olympiacos counter, but Neuer was on hand. Lewandowski levelled the scores when Sá parried Müller's fine volley from 18 yards, the Poland captain smashing home the rebound. Coutinho miscued from close range before match official Danny Makkelie blew for half-time.
The first chance after the restart fell to the hosts, Yassine Meriah only just missing the ball from five yards. Lewandowski put Bayern ahead when Müller flicked on a Tolisso header, the Poland captain being quickest to react to poke past Sá.
Tolisso's fine curler found the top corner of the net, but Guilherme soon pulled one back, his effort from distance beating Neuer with the help of a deflection. The home side upped the ante in the closing stages, Neuer saving from Daniel Podence, but Bayern saw it out and sealed three points.
The result means Bayern top Group B on nine points, five clear of Tottenham. The Bavarians will be back in action on Saturday, when they entertain Union Berlin in the Bundesliga.
Live match report for fcbayern.com by Greg Salmen
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Sá – Elabdellaouí, Meriah, Semedo, Tsimíkas – Bouchalakis (Lovera 69), Guilherme, Camara (Randjelovic 88) – Podence, El-Arabi, Masouras (Guerrero 79)
Allain – Papadopoulos, Xenitidis, Gaspar
Neuer – Kimmich, Pavard, Hernández (Boateng 59), Alaba – Thiago, Martínez (Tolisso 46) – Gnabry, Coutinho, Müller (Perišić 86) – Lewandowski
Ulreich – Goretzka, Davies, Coman
Danny Makkelie (Netherlands)
1-0 El-Arabi (23), 1-1 Lewandowski (34), 1-2 Lewandowski (62), 1-3 Tolisso (75), 2-3 Guilherme (79)
Sedemo, El-Arabi / Thiago, Neuer