FC Bayern Munich continued their perfect start to the 2015/16 Bundesliga season, beating VfL Wolfsburg easily by a score of 5-1, to win their sixth match in a row. In a sold out Allianz Arena (what else is new?), Bayern started a little slow, allowing Wolfsburg to gain some confidence and the lead in the first half, before hitting the guests with what must have felt like a sledgehammer to the forehead. Reports of Brazilian center back Dante having flashbacks to the World Cup semifinals last June are unconfirmed (but probable).
The game started like most Bayern games do, with the hosts sporting a lot of possession, while probing last season's vice champion's defense, without really threatening Diego Benaglio's goal too much. Wolfsburg started settling down, and enjoyed some of their own possession after the first 20 or so minutes, but chances on goal were scarce. In the 26th minute, a nice lob pass from Julian Draxler into the right side of the box to Daniel Caliaguri, allowed the German-born Italian to take a couple of steps, before slamming the ball into the near top corner, leaving Manuel Neuer no chance.
Wolfsburg was sensing their chance. A long punt from Benaglio after a Bayern corner prompted Neuer to come out and play it, well outside of his penalty box, only to lose it to Josuha Guiavogui, who unloaded on the wide-open net from almost the midfield line, only to graze the outside of the left goalpost. Bayern (and Neuer) dodged a bullet.
To open the second half, Pep Guardiola reacted, and brought in Robert Lewandowski for a mostly ineffective Thiago, and also freeing up David Alaba to roam, by substituting off Juan Bernat, and putting Javier Martinez next to Jerome Boateng in the middle of the defense. Lewandowski's substitution also shook up the forward formation, with Douglas Costa switching sides with Mario Gotze, and having Thomas Muller play behind the Polish striker. What a change it turned out to be.
Lewandowski proceeded to dust off an easy ball right in front of the goal in the 51st minute, which had squirted through from Thomas Müller, after a very pretty back-heel from Arturo Vidal, drawing Bayern even. Within 60 seconds, the Polish national team player had struck again. Taking a through ball with Naldo keeping him onside, he unleashed a laser into the bottom left corner, that left Benaglio helpless.
But Lewa wasn't done. The hat-trick was completed in just over three minutes, which took three pokes at the ball to finally put in the net. A deflected cross from Costa would sit up perfectly for the striker, and he would bury it with authority, for his fourth of the game.
But he saved his best for last. Nine minutes after his first goal, in the 60th minute, Lewandowski would lay out sideways, volleying a Mario Götze cross past a motionless Benaglio, to complete one of the most amazing goal-scoring feats ever witnessed at this kind of level of football. Wolfsburg players could do nothing but hang their heads. A chance to complete a double hat-trick was thwarted by Ricardo Rodriguez on the line, but that would do nothing to dampen the mood in the Allianz Arena.
Bayern takes over first place in the table, with Dortmund still waiting to play on Wednesday against Hoffenheim.
Bayern Munich 5 - 1 VfL Wolfsburg
FCB: Robert Lewandowski (51, 52, 55, 57, 60)
Wolfsburg: Daniel Caliguiri (26)
FCB XI: Neuer - Lahm, Boateng, Alaba, Bernat (Martinez, 46) - Alonso (Kimmich 78) - Vidal, Thiago (Lewandowski 46) - Costa, Götze - Müller
VFL XI: Benaglio - Träsch, Dante, Naldo, Rodriguez - Caligiuri, Gustavo, Guilavogui, Draxler - Kruse - Dost
- Lewandowski displayed one of the most dominant performances by a striker ... ever! It's impressive enough to score five goals in a game, a rare feat in itself. But to score five in only 45 minutes is downright insane!
- Mario Götze was mediocre in the first half on the left wing, but came alive when he switched sides to the right. He was dynamic, quick, and showed a much better touch on the ball in the second half.
- Jerome Boateng went about his job like he usually does. Calm, collected, intercepting passes, starting counter attacks, and hitting nice, accurate long balls to the forwards. Ho hum, another day at the office.
- Pep Guardiola's substitutions at half time made it look like a completely different team had come out of the locker room, looking more driven and producing far more chances than in the first 45. Pat on the back, coach, must have been a hell of a speech.