Bayern Munich saw a man sent off in the first half and settled for a 1-1 draw with Schalke on Matchday 19 of the Bundesliga season.
FC Bayern pressured well for the first quarter of an hour, making Schalke work for every second of possession they could get. All of Bayern's chances came from set pieces, with Schalke's desperate defending
Things to a sharp, dramatic turn for the worse in the 17th minute. Sidney Sam got behind the Bayern defense with a long ball played over the top, and Jerome Boateng's rash challenge saw him bring down the speedy attacker. The referee did award the spot kick, and Eric-Maxim Choupo-Moting stepped up to take it. However, you do remember that FC Bayern have the best goalkeeper in the world, correct? While the penalty was poorly taken from Choupo-Moting, Manuel Neuer made the save to keep the match scoreless.
Needing to reinforce the defense, Pep Guardiola brought on Dante for Mario Götze. Of the players in the attack, Götze makes the most sense to remove considering he has just come back from injury. Schalke remained content to sit back and let Bayern dictate the remainder of the first half, and both clubs entered the halftime interval scoreless.
To everyone's surprise, Schalke goalkeeper Fabian Giefer did not return to the field following halftime. Giefer's injury was later reported to be a thigh problem. The Royal Blues brought on 19 year old Timon Wellenreuther for his Bundesliga debut. I can't imagine a worse place to make your Bundesliga debut than coming on at halftime at the Allianz Arena.
The first opportunity for either side fell to the left foot of Robben. He streaked into the penalty area and lashed a rope toward the Schalke goal. Wellenreuther threw his hands up to block the swerving shot and was able to keep it out.
Robert Lewandowski scored in the 65th minute with a shot that deflected off of a Schalke defender and went into the goal. However, the assistant referee on the far side of the field waived it off for going out of bounds. Angry that the goal was called off, Robben made sure that Bayern quickly scored one that counted. On the ensuing corner kick, Robben found his way to an open area in the penalty area and headed the ball past the young goalkeeper to give Bayern the 1-0 lead.
That advantage wouldn't last for long. On the other end, Benedikt Höwedes struck a header from a corner kick that spun away from Neuer into the far corner. With eighteen minutes left, Schalke had their equalizer, and the score was level at 1-1.
Lewandowski had a chance to steal all three points at the end of the match after a sublime first touch put him clear on goal, but his shot was well high of the target. The referee decided against playing any stoppage time and blew the whistle right on 90 minutes.
Bayern's lead at the top of the Bundesliga remains at 8 points with other results going their way on the day. The club returns to the field on Saturday in Bundesliga action against Stuttgart.
Bayern Munich 1-1 Schalke
Bayern: Robben (67)
Schalke: Höwedes (72)
Bayern (3-4-3): Neuer; Alaba, Benatia, Boateng (red card); Bernat, Alonso, Schweinsteiger, Weiser; Götze (Dante 27), Müller (Lewandowski 55), Robben (Rode 88)