Bayern Munich returned to winning ways in the Bundesliga, dismantling high-flying Freiburg 5-0, to climb into second and close the gap on leaders Union Berlin to four points.
Julian Nagelsmann’s side started the match in a lowly fifth-position, seven points behind Union Berlin following their 2-0 victory at Dortmund.
Perhaps low on confidence after a poor start to the season by their high stands, Bayern looked nervy in the opening stages.
The relief was therefore tangible inside the Allianz Arena when Serge Gnabry handed the hosts the initiative in the 13th-minute with a powerful header after visiting goalkeeper Mark Flekken had parried Leroy Sane’s shot. Bayern doubled their advantage 20 minutes later and Sane was involved once more, his through ball feeding Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting who slotted into the bottom corner with a classy finish.
Sane deservedly registered on the scoresheet seven minutes after the restart, putting Bayern out of sight with a beautiful curling effort from the edge of the box.
The hosts were purring now and with Freiburg collapsing, Sadio Mane’s nonchalant lobbed effort added a fourth just three minutes later.
Marcel Sabitzer came off the bench to make it five with 10 minutes to play, as Bayern sent out a message to their league contenders.
With the result, Bayern Munich leapfrog Freiburg into second with Christian Streicher’s side dropping into third.
TALKING POINT – RUTHLESS DISPLAY CAPS PRODUCTIVE WEEK FOR BAYERN
Bayern’s worst league start in 12 years meant the Bavarians began the match seven points behind leaders Union Berlin. Therefore, the pressure was on to claim victory.
Against a fired-up Freiburg – who have their own lofty ambitions this term after an impressive start – that could have been a tricky task. But once Nagelsmann’s side got their noses in front, they began to turn on the style, banishing memories of previous weeks with a comprehensive and ruthless display. The gulf in class was evident, with Freiburg having conceded 50% of their goals tonight.
Having claimed their place in the knockout stages of the Champions League with two games to spare following a 4-2 victory over Vikoria Plzen, it has turned out to be a productive few days for Bayern Munich. It could yet prove to be a defining period in their season.
PLAYER OF THE MATCH – LEROY SANE (BAYERN MUNICH)
An assist and a goal of his own capped a vibrant display from the Germany international, who was constantly in space and making things happen.
Bayern Munich: Ulreich 6, Mazraoui 6, Upamecano 6, De Ligt 7, Davies 7, Kimmich 7, Goretzka 7, Sane 8*, Gnabry 7, Mane 7, Choupo-Moting 7.. subs.. Pavard 5, Sabitzer 6, Tel 5, Musiala 7, Stanisic N/A
Freiburg: Flekken 7, Sildillia 5, Ginter 5, Lienhart 5, Gunter 5, Eggestein 5, Hofler 5, Doan 6, Schade 6, Grifo 5, Gregoritsch 5.. subs: Holer 5, Keitel 5, Petersen 5, Jeong 5, Weishaupt 5.
13’ – GOAL! BAYERN MUNICH 1-0 FREIBURG (SERGE GNABRY): Sublime football from Bayern as they take the lead! A terrific ball in behind feeds Davies ad his low cross picks out Sane whose shot is somehow kept out by Flekken. Is the chance gone? No! Gnabry pounces on the rebound and heads home.
33’- GOAL! BAYERN MUNICH 2-0 FREIBURG (ERIC MAXIM CHOUPO-MOTING): A great finish from Choupo-Moting! The striker accepts a beautiful pass from Sane, played with the outside of his boot, he holds the ball up with strength, creating the space for the shot and his effort creeps underneath Flekken into the corner of goal.
55’ – GOAL! BAYERN MUNICH 4-0 FREIBURG (SADIO MANE): That is beautiful! Gnabry is the provider as he lifts a fine pass into the path of Mane. Flekken rushes off his line and the former Liverpool forward nonchalantly lobs him as the ball bounces into an empty net. Exquisite.
80’ – GOAL! BAYERN MUNICH 5-0 FREIBURG (MARCEL SABITZER): A goal for the substitute Sabitzer! Gnabry has all the space in the world to run into before releasing a pass into the feet of Mane. He pokes it to Sabitzer and he slots it into a gaping net.