Bayern Munich secured a 5-1 victory over Borussia Mönchengladbach on Saturday as the Bavarians celebrated their first Bundesliga match at the Allianz Arena since being crowned German champions.
A late first half brace from Sandro Wagner saw the Bavarians bounce back after conceding an early goal, while strikes from Thiago Alcântara, David Alaba and Robert Lewandowski put the gloss on Bayern’s performance during the second 45 minutes.
Jupp Heynckes secured his fourth Bundesliga title as a manager last week on the road to local rivals Augsburg, a result that was followed with Bayern securing their place in the semi finals of the Champions League.
Mönchengladbach are still fighting to qualify for Europe next season, but a run of results that have been very hit and miss in 2018 leave the Foals sitting six points adrift of the Europa League places.
The visitors’ danger man Thorgan Hazard looked to cause Bayern Munich problems from the outset, with Dieter Hecking’s side rotating between a back three and a back four depending on if they were in or out of possession.
But it was fringe striker Josip Drmić who created Gladbach’s first chance of the game. After racing on to the end of an innocuous through ball from Jonas Hofmann, the Swiss forward turned past Niklas Süle with ease before curling a left-footed strike beyond Sven Ulreich to give the Foals a deserved lead.
Bayern were well off the pace in the early stages of the game and they didn’t create their first chance of the match until 15 minutes were on the clock, with Thomas Müller sending a close-range effort just wide of the post.
Müller continued to threaten the Mönchengladbach goal without really testing Yann Sommer, while Corentin Tolisso’s long-range effort forced the 29-year-old into an unorthodox save.
But the hosts did find their way past Sommer before half-time thanks to some outstanding work between Süle and Müller. The former Hoffenheim defender showed a brilliant burst of pace before releasing Müller down the right wing.
Fan favourite Müller then put the ball on a plate for Sandro Wagner and the target man was able to find the back of the net despite appearing to miss-hit his first time effort.
Wagner then found himself on the scoresheet again to complete the turnaround before half-time, but the Germany international relied on some comical goalkeeping to see his tame header creep into the bottom corner of the net just before the break.
Bayern Munich looked a different team following the restart and the Bavarians comfortably controlled the tempo of the game.
Midfield maestro Thiago Alcântara deservedly got on the scoresheet just five minutes into the second half as Gladbach’s faint hopes of staging a comeback of their own faded.
After Tolisso made a marauding run down the right wing, Wagner’s first time effort was saved but the ball fell perfectly for the right boot of Thiago and the Spain international easily pocked the ball into the back of the net.
Substitute James Rodríguez then saw a left footed effort rattle the base of the post, while makeshift winger Juan Bernat had his hopeful appeals for a penalty waved away by referee Robert Kampka – a decision that was backed by VAR.
David Alaba then popped up with just his second goal of the season. The Austrian full back fainted onto his weaker right foot and fired the ball from outside of the box past a static Yann Sommer to bring Bavaria to its feet once again.
econd half substitute Robert Lewandowski then scored Bayern’s fifth and final goal of the game with a clinical finish inside the penalty area, and Bayern Munich comfortably saw out the remainder of the match ahead of their trip to Bayer Leverkusen in midweek.
The Bundesliga champions will now be focusing on booking their place in the final of the DFB-Pokal on Tuesday before travelling to Hannover 96 next week. Bayern will then welcome Real Madrid to Germany in their next home game, with a trip to the Santiago Bernabéu taking place just six days later.