With both VfL Wolfsburg and Borussia Mönbchengladbach dropping points, today was Bayern Munich's chance to extend their lead at the top of the table. And they did that in style, winning 4-0 over Hoffenheim behind dynamic vertical attacking prowess.
The opening exchanges were a flurry as Hoffenheim pressed high up the field, dominating the Bayern Munich half spatially and putting the Bavarians under enormous pressure. To their credit, Bayern Munich weathered the initial pressure well, content to let wing play and swift counterattacks dictate their attack. As the match progressed Bayern Munich found avenues around the Hoffenheim high press, moving Rafinha from the rightback slot and pushing him into midfield alongside Xabi Alonso. This afforded Bayern Munich some modicum of control in midfield and helped ease the pressure on Xabi Alonso, despite how relatively little Rafinha did for the first 20-30 minutes.
Despite the spatial control exerted by Hoffenheim it was Mario Götze who opened the scoring with a stunning swerving strike from 30-yards out in the 22nd minute. The shot curled around a defender screening the shot from Oliver Baumann's line of sight before landing in the back of the net. Bayern Munich doubled their advantage 17 minutes later when a wonderful floated cross from Arjen Robben found Robert Lewandowski ghosting off the back of Niklas Süle. The Polish striker hit the header while falling away from the ball with tremendous force, redirecting if pass the diving Baumann.
The second half was all Bayern Munich as they put pedal to the metal and ran at an ever more exhausted side. With an exhausting press Hoffenheim made several attacking substitutions and while they continued to be effective up front, their midfield waned in second half exchanges giving Bayern Munich ample time and room in midfield to control the game. However it wasn't until Bayern Munich had brought on both Sebastian Rode and Bastian Schweinsteiger late in the second half that Bayern Munich found their next gear. The two fresh and dynamic box-to-box midfielders shredded the Hoffenheim defense at will, while Arjen Robben and Franck RIbery on the wings were devastating.
The substitutions along with a tactical switch to the 4-3-3 was a devastating choice from Bayern Munich, as Robben combined in scintillating fashion with Robert Lewandowski, bursting through 3 defenders, before chipping Oliver Baumann in the 81st minute. Later Schweinsteiger opted to bypass the entire Hoffenheim defense with a fantastic chip that hit Sebastian Rode perfectly. Rode two touched and slammed a thunderbolt past Oliver Baumann in the 85th.
4-0 read the scoreline at 90 minutes - a fitting end line for a Bayern Munich performance that oozed clinical finishing and vertical dynamism.