Once again, an early lead allows FC Bayern to put the game in cruise control, as Hertha Berlin proved no match. This one was never close, although after it got to 3-0 the game steadied for a bit and settled down into something closer to a back-and-forth contest.
After an early waster chance from Ribery, he made amends a minute later with a draw-three-defenders-and-pass move that got the ball to Gomez in the middle of the field. One good move from Gomez gave him a chance to open the scoring:
The second one came just a few moments later - this time, it was Boateng with a sharp move to snag the ball before the end line and swing it back in to Ribery:
Although Gomez notched two goals, I think Jerome Boateng was possible the most impressive player today. Playing in his non-favored RB position, Boateng threatened the right flank every time he went forward. He was able to use good moves and accurate passes to help set up the Bayern offense, and still get back to clamp down on Hertha on the rare occasions when they managed to create anything close to a chance.
Some other points:
- Although giving up 4 goals is never fun, I don't think Kraft played poorly. He had at least two pretty good saves, and on the miss by Muller, which looked like an awful blown chance at first, Kraft actually had the goal mostly govered with a sideways dive.
- Great to see Olic get back out there, and he seemed to be moving pretty smoothly. Although he did appear to pass up a shooting chance to try to draw a foul in the last 3 minutes. I thought Contento looked OK off the bench as well. With this crazy run of games over the past 3 weeks, we'll need depth at all levels.
- If you were watching the ESPN 3 feed, I think the commentator summarized the situation perfectly. He said something like "last year, under van Gaal, Bayern had just as much possession as this. But this year, every second they have the ball, Bayern is trying to find the space between the posts." Obviously, it's not ALL about the absence of van Gaal, but between a new manager and coaching staff, new players, and a new attitude, this is a much more exciting club to watch.
- Huge game vs. Napoli in just 3 days. If we win that one, we have Group A under complete control. A draw, and we're still in decent shape. We'll be back tomorrow to preview that one and look ahead. Thanks for reading.