Bayern Munich came into their clash against FC Ingolstadt riding a high following their 5-0 dismantling of FC Rostov. However Ingolstadt proved dramatically more of a test, as their impressive defense and counterattacking made life rough for Bayern. Ultimately Bayern was able to wait them out, finding the small seams to earn a 3-1 win.
It’s rare for the visitors to get the proceedings started at the Allianz Arena but it was Ingolstadt who drew first blood in the 8th minute. A lighting quick counterattack down the Bayern Munich right neatly broke down the defensive midfield and centerback pairing, allowing Dario Lezcano plenty of time to slip a quick shot past Manuel Neuer.
Luckily for Bayern, Ingolstadt gifted them an equalizer five minutes later. Some inattentive play in midfield allowed Arturo Vidal to win back the ball in a dangerous position. Franck Ribery picked up the second ball and put Robert Lewandowski in on goal with a through ball that was finished with a beautiful long chip of Orjan Nyland.
For Bayern’s part they dominated the bulk of possession but proved unable to break through the Ingolstadt defense. Without support, Robert Lewandowski found himself drifting into wide areas to simply find the ball. Coupled with Ribery trying to drift into the middle as Juan Bernat overlapped wide left, Bayern simply didn’t have the ability to move the ball through the Ingolstadt defensive block. Ingolstadt for their part executed their gameplan to perfection, winning the ball back in dangerous areas and counterattacking into the Bayern half at pace.
Douglas Costa replaced Kingsley Coman at the halftime break and the Brazilian’s introduction immediately upended the Ingolstadt defense as his direct dribbling and crossing forced Ingoltstadt to commit numbers to him. That paid dividends by opening space for Xabi Alonso at the top of the area to unleash a laser blast of a shot that easily beat Orjan Nyland.
But for all their effort, Bayern Munich still couldn’t break down the Ingolstadt defense reliably. Even the introduction of Thiago in place of the ineffectual Renato Sanches wasn’t enough. On the defensive end, Bayern continued to give away chances that were far too dangerous. Ingolstadt came within inches of equalizing on two occassions, first forcing a brilliant reaction save from Manuel Neuer before a completely unmarked shot from Hinterseer went just millimeters wide.
That defensive fragility saw Carlo Ancelotti bring in Jerome Boateng who immediately changed the game around, winning the ball, and unleashing a brilliant pass to set Ribery out on the counterattack. Ribery switched the field of play to Rafinha who fired hard and low into the far corner to score his first Bundesliga goal in four years ending any change Ingolstadt had to earn their way back into the game.