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Champions League beat down: Bayern Munich run AS Roma off the field

Bayern Munich destroyed AS Roma.

Alexander Hassenstein

It was never close. Bayern Munich crushed AS Roma on Tuesday in dramatic fashion to put the Bavarians at the top of their Champions League group.

Bayern struggled to get into the match in the opening minutes. Roma were pressing high, and the Bavarians were misplacing simple passes that they don't normally miss. Then... BOOM.

Arjen Robben picks up the ball on the right side with Ashley Cole in front of him. Everyone knew what Robben was going to do, and not even his former teammate could stop him. With a touch to get the ball onto his left foot, Robben curled a left footed shot to the far corner that left Morgan De Sanctis no opportunity. Just like that, it was 1-0 to FC Bayern just nine minutes into the match.

Roma immediately came back at FC Bayern, but Manuel Neuer wasn't about to let Gervinho get the equalizer that soon after taking the lead. Robert Lewandowski then had a great opportunity, but De Sanctis snuffed it out.

Then, the roof caved in on the heads of Roma.

Bayern's high pressure caused a turnover in midfield from Roma. Mario Götze dribbled past a few defenders before playing a beautiful one-two with Thomas Müller. The German's backheel ended up at Götze's feet and he easily finished past De Sanctis to make it 2-0 in the 23rd minute.

Two minutes later, Lewandowski made it 3-0. After dispossessing Roma again in midfield, the ball found it's way wide to Juan Bernat. The winger crossed the ball into the box, and Lewandowski slid in behind Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa for the free header. Twenty five minutes gone, and FC Bayern were running away with the match.

Not satisfied with the big lead, Bayern grabbed another in the 30th minute. Lewandowski played Robben in behind Cole once again, and Robben's shot was partially saved by De Sanctis but still found it's way into the back of the net. Four to nothing after 30 minutes, folks. This happened.

Bayern grabbed their fifth goal five minutes later, but the decision by the referee was a bit dubious. David Alaba found his way into the box on the left side and crossed the ball on the ground. Kostas Manolas slid to block the cross, and the ball struck him in his trailing arm. Thomas Müller stepped up to take the penalty and converted. It was 5-0 after 35 minutes.

Bayern threatened several more times before the half was out and probably should have grabbed at least one more goal. The referee mercifully blew the halftime whistle for Roma, and Bayern led 5-0.

The second half started much of the same, with Bayern threatening Roma and coming close a time or two. Then, Bayern took their foot off the gas, and Roma thought they found the breakthrough in the 54th minute. Gervinho beat Medhi Benatia for speed and smashed his shot off the post. A long ball over the top found Alessandro Florenzi onside and alone on goal, but Neuer made himself big and blocked the shot attempt.

Gervinho continued to pester the Bayern backline with his speed and though for sure he had his goal. Another long ball in over the top saw Gervinho sneak in behind Benatia. The Ivorian shot first time toward Neuer, but the German number one made a crazy save to keep Roma off the scoresheet.

He would finally find his goal a couple of minutes later, though replays would show that Gervinho was offside. However, the referee missed the call and Neuer was finally beaten. Sixty five minutes gone, Bayern's lead was cut to four.

Then, like clockwork, FC Bayern roared to life once again. Franck Ribery entered the field and outran the Roma backline before chipping De Sanctis to make it 6-1. Then, just seconds after entering the field, Xherdan Shaqiri scored Bayern's seventh. Pouncing on a rebound in the box, Shaqiri put his shot into the top of the net to make it 7-1 and end Roma's punishment.

With CSKA Moscow grabbing a point at home against Manchester City today, Bayern now sit comfortably at the top of the Champions league group with 9 points. Roma is in second with 4, while Man City and CSKA sit on 2 and 1 point respectively.

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