Created on 2017-08-27 at 09:20 AM by Redaktion
A yearned-for comeback, two spectacular goals, three crucial points: FC Bayern's first Bundesliga match on the road was hard-fought, but ultimately the German record champions won deservedly. A Robert Lewandowski brace meant Bayern extended their impressive streak against the men from the north to 16 competitive victories. The Bavarians were even more pleased with their flawless defensive display.
"We're glad we won, that we kept a clean sheet and that we took three points," said Manuel Neuer, who made his comeback after 130 days on the sidelines and was rarely called into action on Saturday afternoon: "It was better than the Leverkusen match, especially in defence. Basically we allowed Bremen no chance," the Bayern captain praised his team-mates. Sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic commented: "Our positional play was better, we allowed hardly anything, we were compact and turned in a better defensive display. Keep it up!"
'It wasn't so easy'
The men from Munich, who were joined by fit-again Thiago, struggled to create presentable chances against the rock of Bremen's defence especially in the first half. "We didn't really click into gear then," said Salihamidzic. "It wasn't so easy," added Lewandowski: "Bremen defended with a back five and three defensive midfielders. We had to be very patient." All stats favoured Carlo Ancelotti's troops at half-time, but they failed to make their dominance count for a long time.
Bayern upped the pace after the restart, the hosts becoming increasingly tired. "We did a much better job in the second half, we played faster and went for the one-on-ones," a pleased Salihamidzic explained. Robert Lewandowski broke the deadlock in the 72nd minute, crowning a fine Kingsley Coman assist with his backheel. "I was at the near post and there was little space, so I had to try it that way," said the striker, praising "Kingsley's great pass" while remaining modest: "I did a fairly good job too after that."
'We're glad we have him'
Lewandowski closed out the meeting only 196 seconds later. Thomas Müller set up the galloping Poland captain, who eluded a number of opponents before finishing with a double nutmeg that ended up in the back of the net. He almost bagged a hat-trick with the final whistle imminent. "He's world-class, we're glad we have him," Salihamidzic praised the forward, who is in a fine early form. Lewandowski swelled his tally to six goals in four competitive matches this season.
The hitman has scored 19 goals in 27 appearances in 2017. No other Bundesliga player boasts more goals this year. With 154 Bundesliga goals under his belt, Lewandowski is the competition's most prolific active player (along with Mario Gomez). The 29-year-old did not mind waiting for his chances for long: "You have to be prepared then."
'Nice to be here again'
At the other end Neuer was pleased with the goals. His comeback was a quiet affair for the World's Best Goalkeeper. "He didn't have a lot to do, so I didn't notice he featured in goal," said Lewandowski with a grin: "But of course we're pleased he's with us again." Sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic also praised Sven Ulreich: "He turned in a superb display last week. But Manuel is the benchmark, not only at FC Bayern but also worldwide. So we're glad he's fit again." Neuer concluded: "It's nice to be here again!"