FULLTIME: WOLFSBURG 1-3 BAYERN MUNICH
It certainly looks like yesterday’s press conference worked to motivate the players for a solid, gritty victory over Wolfsburg. What a performance from Thiago Alcantara, Javi Martinez, and Robert Lewandowski on the day. Big day for the Bavarians.
84’: Sanches comes on for James for the final few minutes.
82’: Bayern will look to hold on to their 3-1 lead here over the final few minutes. They’re scrapping for everything out there.
73’: GOAL BAYERN MUNICH! JAMES RODRIGUEZ! Lewandowski holds the ball up at the top of the box and spins to his left to play in James who rips a shot first time past Casteels. While the Wolfsburg goalkeeper thought he was going far post, James caught him off-balance with a near post laser beam.
Lewandowski ➡️ James Rodríguez = GOAL pic.twitter.com/spIAv4CMcw— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) October 20, 2018
66’: Goretzka comes on for Gnabry. Bayern need more out of Gnabry.
64’: GOAL WOLFSBURG. Wolfsburg narrow the lead to 2-1 through Weghorst. Mehmedi runs in behind Hummels and receives the pass out of midfield. He crosses it into the box to Weghorst for the easy finish.
Wolfsburg take one back!— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) October 20, 2018
Wout Weghorst finds the back of the net and brings the home side back in the game. pic.twitter.com/3HFMI4U61P
58’: RED CARD TO BAYERN. Doh! After picking up a yellow for diving in the first half, Robben is sent off for his first foul of the game. Welp.
53’: Rafinha fouls Weghorst in the penalty area, and the ref whistles for a penalty. But, the linesman has his flag up for offside. Free kick for Bayern.
52’: Gnabry has a breakaway, but he’s tracked down by Brooks for a corner. Nothing comes of it.
49’: TOR FC BAYERN! Robert Lewandowski makes it 2-0. Roussillon’s header back to Casteels doesn’t make it to his goalkeeper as Lewandowski intercepts the pass. He gets past Casteels and slots it into the back of the net for his second of the game.
What a blunder by Wolfsburg— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) October 20, 2018
Lewandowski capitalizes on the mistake and makes it 2-0 Bayern. pic.twitter.com/7HMcJ8eUGK
46’: Second half kick off! Rafinha has come on for Alaba.
HALFTIME: WOLFSBURG 0-1 BAYERN MUNICH
Solid first half for the Bavarians after a tumultuous few weeks. Lewandowski gets back on the scoresheet, and Bayern put up a clean sheet for the first 45 minutes.
41’: Wolfsburg are clawing this way back into it. While they haven’t challenged Neuer yet, they’re getting some sustained possession in the Bayern half of the field.
30’: GOAL BAYERN MUNICH! FINALLY....Robert Lewandowski breaks through for a 1-0 Bayern Munich lead!!!!! Great look there by Hummels!
Lewandowski gives Bayern the lead!— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) October 20, 2018
He ends his 4-game scoring drought and opens the scoring for Bayern. pic.twitter.com/Lb9NC4OlBh
25’: Great strike from Robben, but a good save by Casteels! Lewy should have buried that. Robben, Kimmich, and Sule have arguably been Bayern’s best players so far. Bayern is gaining some momentum. Gnabry, Hummels, and Alaba have been solid as well.
23’: Joshua Kimmich with a quality left-footed attempt after some nice interplay with Arjen Robben and Robert Lewandowski. Save for Wolfsburg, though.
19’: Wolfsburg is the better more confident team right now. Bayern is flat. I don’t think Javi Martinez is bringing anything to the lineup right now (beats dead horse).
16’: Wolfsburg is turning up the heat a beat a bit now. Bayern does not look confident. Maybe I’m reading too much into it right now. But Bayern still lacks urgency. Free kick for Wolfsburg doesn’t result in anything.
13’: James, Lewy, and Alaba all options here for Bayern. James takes it...not his best effort. Easy save for Wolfsburg.
11’: Advantageous free kick here for Bayern just outside the box.
8’: Bayern has been the more assertive team so far. Wolfsburg seems to still be feeling its way out. While Bayern has been assertive, though, they haven’t exactly looked in sync. They haven’t looked fluid in weeks honestly.
4’: Some nice work from Serge Gnabry early on here, but no goal. Good to see some (a little) early pressure.
3’: It’s early, but it looks like Wolfsburg will follow the lead of FC Augsburg, Hertha Berlin, and Borussia Monchengladbach...meaning, they’ll actually try to play.
1’: Here we go. This game is WAY more more important than I thought it would be at this stage. This is Chuck Smith (for now), but I’ll be giving way to the main man, Phillip Quinn, at some point.
One hour before kickoff: Starting lineups are out! James Rodriguez starts at attacking midfield while Serge Gnabry plays on the left instead of Franck Ribery.
It’s not often that you see a club as big as Bayern Munich backed into a corner. In some ways, yesterday’s press conference reminded me a wounded animal lashing out in fear and desperation. The bosses are angry. The players are embattled. Niko Kovac looks like a tired man. For Wolfsburg, this game couldn’t come at a better time.
Bayern Munich currently sit in a very unfamiliar position — seventh on the table, tied on points with Eintracht Frankfurt but with a game in hand. A loss wouldn’t change anything. A draw would send the team into the European spots, where a bunch of teams sit on 14 points each. A win could see the Bavarians go momentarily as high as second place, one point behind Dortmund. It’s very strange to talk about these things, when usually Bayern would be many, many points ahead by this stage of the season.
However, that is the current reality of FC Bayern Munich. At the very least, we can be comforted by the fact that Wolfsburg are on a longer winless streak than us, with their last victory coming against Bayer Leverkusen in matchday 2. Both teams will be looking for a win today. For our sake, I hope Niko Kovac has a plan.
It’s Bayern time.
Location: Volkswagen Arena, Wolfsburg, Germany
Time: 3:30 pm local time, 9:30 am EST
TV/streaming: Find Your Country
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