Bayern Munich have opened up a four-point lead at the top of the Bundesliga thanks to second-half goals from Thomas Müller and Leon Goretzka against local rivals Augsburg.
The hosts couldn’t get the quick-start they were hoping for on their 120th anniversary, with Augsburg proving to be frustrating opponents for Hansi Flick’s side throughout the opening 45 minutes – both teams went into the break with a combined xG of just 0.43.
Bayern Munich only needed seven second-half minutes to finally break the deadlock, with the always reliable Müller racing onto the end of a perfect through ball from Jérôme Boateng to poke the ball into the back of the net.
Augsburg’s Andreas Luthe and Jeffrey Gouweleeuw were at their best to keep the scoreline down, while at the other end Manuel Neuer rolled back the years with a world-class save to keep out Florian Niederlechner’s close-range effort.
Niederlechner then scored a last-minute equaliser for Augsburg, but the offside flag came to Bayern Munich’s rescue to chalk off the strike, while substitute Goretzka added a late second to send the Bavarians four points clear at the top of the Bundesliga table.
Key Talking Point
Last week’s 6-0 win over Hoffenheim might have been Bayern Munich’s best performance since Pep Guardiola’s stint in charge of the club, but the Rekordmeister struggled to keep that form going this time around.
Hansi Flick’s side had to resort to route one football to get the ball into the back of the net, but Thomas Müller’s opener gave Bayern Munich a huge injection of confidence which dismissed the question of if they would win – changing it to simply by how much they would win.
Their dangerous attacking players didn’t always have it their own way, but the impressive partnership of Joshua Kimmich and Thiago Alcântara gave Bayern Munich the perfect base to get all three points.
Neuer (6); Pavard (7), Boateng (7), Alaba (6), Davies (7); Kimmich (7), Thiago (7), Gnabry (5), Muller (8), Coutinho (7); Zirkzee (6).
Substitutes: Goretzka (6), Martinez (N/A), Hernandez (N/A).
Things didn’t go all Bayern Munich’s way, but Thomas Müller popped up when it really mattered for the Rekordmeister to get them over the line in what was a must-win match in the race for an eighth straight Bundesliga title.
That finish by Thomas Muller is so so so underrated.
What a player
— Jack◢ ◤ (@JackEFC95) March 8, 2020
I see Muller is back to being old Muller
— Zach Smith (@zsmithtweets1) March 8, 2020
Every time Thomas Muller gets a goal contribution 12 year old me in 2014 smiles
— Avi (@suso_fan) March 8, 2020
The 30-year-old was popping up all over the pitch to try to make something happen, and although it wasn’t Müller’s best appearance in recent weeks, Bayern Munich’s Raumdeuter was crucial in their win.
Luthe (8); Framberger (6), Gouweleewu (8), Jedvaj (6), Max (7); Khedira (6), Baier (6), Richter (6), Lowen (6), Iago (6); Niederlechner (7).
Substitutes: Vargas (6), Finnbogason (8), Uduokhai (N/A).
Although Bayern Munich will already be looking ahead to their Champions League match with Chelsea, they first will have to focus on a difficult trip to Union Berlin at the imposing Stadion An der Alten Försterei.
For Augsburg, they’ll host a Wolfsburg side who are chasing qualification for Europe.