FUERTH, GERMANY - AUGUST 25: Thomas Mueller of Bayern (R) celebrates the first goal with Mario Mandzukic (L) and Dante (C) of Bayern during the Bundesliga match between Greuther Fuerth and FC Bayern Muenchen at Trolli Arena on August 25, 2012 in Fuerth, Germany. (Photo by Christof Koepsel/Bongarts/Getty Images)
FC Bayern Munich picked up win to start the season, comprehensively beating a decent Greuther Fürth side by a 3-0 score-line. Fürth defended pretty well and didn't embarrass themselves, but the outcome was never really in doubt, as Bayern controlled a majority of the possession, created a majority of the chances, and was never really troubled coming the other way. The first goal came from a corner, which is great news considering our problems with scoring from corners last year.
Bayern started with Schweinsteiger on the bench, Kroos and Gustavo at the double pivot, and Badstuber at LB (shades of the 2010 CL Final). Although Fürth didn't make anything easy, and Bayern had some trouble getting it into the final third in the early going, the talent gap started to make itself felt towards the end of the first half. Although we were nearly in danger of going into the half scoreless, until Shaqiri's perfect corner was headed on by Dante, and Tommy was there to clean it up:
Coming out in the second half, Fürth might have been expected to press forward a bit more, but they really couldn't get enough possession to do much. Bayern started teeing off on the goal, and it was a Robben shot that led to a rebound right onto Mandzukic's head.
Was I the only one thinking "Gomez would have found a way to blow that chance?"
- The back line didn't have too much to do, but I thought Badstuber looked OK over there. He didn't have to make any goal-saving tackles, though, and I think we can all agree Alaba is the first choice if he's healthy.
- Shaqiri looked pretty good, he might be the faster player on the squad. He has good acceleration, good touch, and he can beat defenders on the dribble. Once he works his way into the groove of our offense, this could be a deadly offense.
- Kroos was solid, and he was the only one making aggressive plays for much of that quiet first half. But man, that hair has got to go.
- Bastian didn't have much to do in his ~15 minutes on the pitch, but he appears to be moving well. Sooner or later, we'll need him to do more than mop-up duty, so let's hope he's truly healthy.
- Man U is on FSC right now, and Nemanja Vidic looks at least 40 pounds lighter than the last time I saw him. Seriously, that's not an exaggeration. I guess he couldn't do any strength-training with his ACL injury or whatever. He looks like an entirely different person.
- 'Gladbach beat Hoffenheim by a 2-1 score, Nurnberg beat Hamburg 1-0 in a thriller (Hamburg hit the bar in the closing minutes), Duesseldorf beat Augsburg, and Mainz and Freiburg fought to a draw. Up next is Frankfurt and Leverkusen, I believe.
I can't find the Robben (?) goal yet, but we'll keep an eye out for it. We'll be back with more later, but it feels good to start with a win. The +3 differential puts Bayern on top of the table.* * * *
From Gilly - all 3 goals, from the Eurosport feed. Thanks, man.