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Bayern Munich draw with Eintracht Frankfurt to keep Bundesliga title race wide open

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Bayern Munich drop points in their second straight Bundesliga game, a troublesome record for Carlo Ancelotti.

Eintracht Frankfurt v Bayern Muenchen - Bundesliga Photo by Lars Baron/Bongarts/Getty Images

Bayern Munich went to Frankfurt needing a rebound performance after Cologne forced a result out of them in Allianz Arena. That performance did not come, the defending champions dropping points for the second straight week.

Bayern’s lead in each half could not hold up against the relentless pressure from Eintracht Frankfurt. Even a red card in the second half could not land the Eagles as they sustained their unbeaten record in Commerz-Bank-Arena.

The result has created an unsettling trend that Carlo Ancelotti has become a part of in his first season with the team. Bayern have not dropped points in consecutive league matches before the winter break since the 2011-12 season – the last one in which the Reds did not win the Bundesliga. It was also the second consecutive week Bayern could not make progress in the title race, failing to capitalize on Dortmund’s 1-1 draw against Hertha Berlin on Friday.

Now winless in their last three games in all competition, Bayern have to undertake the first part of a home-away stretch against PSV Eindhoven in the Champions League. Though the Dutch club has not reached the quarterfinals since 2007, they were the only team to keep finalists Atletico Madrid from scoring before Real Madrid did so to win last year’s final. Bayern enter this tough stretch of fixtures without the morality boost of doing something no Bundesliga team has done this season in Frankfurt.

Frankfurt exposed many vulnerabilities in Bayern’s team, especially in midfield. Nico Kovac deployed three central defenders and four midfielders and unleashed them to press Bayern high up the field. The Bavarians recorded the second lowest shot total in a league game all season as a result, managing only to unleash only 14 shots throughout the game.

Even though Ancelotti had reinserted several veteran players that were absent in Bayern’s game against Cologne, his side could not establish a presence in the midfield. Xabi Alonso was frequently forced into Bayern’s half and was eventually replaced by Renato Sanches at halftime. The teenage star wasn’t the difference maker Ancelotti was hoping him to be as the midfield went into further disarray.

Arjen Robben was able to provide to spark an attack that Robert Lewandowski was not apart of for the first time this season. He finished off a short-angled shot after popping a dribble over the Frankfurt defense.

But Frankfurt were clearly the ones who possessed the biggest drive in the final third. Timothy Chandler fired a shot off of the right post shortly after Robben’s opener, and he also headed on a service from Bastian Oczipka that Alexander Meier nearly headed over the goal line before a savvy save from Manuel Neuer.

Frankfurt’s fortune eventually turned in their favor. Szabolcs Huszti slid a shot inside the far post after getting the ball off of a whiffed clearance from Jerome Boateng.

The momentum swung back Bayern’s way at the hour mark when Mats Hummels’s shot from the top of the box fell to Kimmich’s feet. The young midfielder finished off the chance for his fourth goal of the season. Shortly thereafter Huszti received a second yellow card after headbutting Renato Sanches, giving Bayern an advantage on the scoreboard and on the field.

But Frankfurt were not about to let an opportunity to take points from the defending champions slip through their fingers. After taking the ball to the goal line, Chandler cut inside of Alaba and fired away a left footed shot towards the far post. Marco Fabian, appearing to be in an offside position, chested home the shot to level the goal line once more and keep Frankfurt’s home unbeaten run intact.

Match Details

Eintracht Frankfurt (2-2) Bayern Munich

SGE: Huszti (43’), Fabian (79’)
FCB: Arjen Robben (10’), Joshua Kimmich (62’)

Frankfurt XI: Hradecky – Oczipka, Vallejo, Hector, Abraham, Chandler – Rebic (Hasebe 67’), Huszti, Mascarell, Fabian – Meier (Hrgota 77’)

Bayern XI: Neuer – Lahm, Boateng, Hummels, Alaba – Kimmich, Alonso (Renato Sanches 46’), Thiago – Robben (Rafinha 76’), Müller, Coman (Lewandowski 67’)