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Match awards from Bayern Munich’s utter 6-0 domination of Borussia Dortmund

Is there a way to just give every Bayern player an award?

Robert Lewandowski of Bayern Muenche speaks to James Rodriguez of Bayern Muenchen during the UEFA Champions League group B match between Bayern Muenchen and Paris Saint-Germain at Allianz Arena on December 5, 2017 in Munich, Germany.
“Pssst, you were awesome today, Bob.” “You weren’t so bad your self, James.”
Photo by Adam Pretty/Bongarts/Getty Images

Jersey Swap: Christian Pulisic. Really felt bad for Pulisic during this match. He was one of the only Dortmund players that offered anything positive, especially before the match got out of hand and Bayern ran away with it. During the opening stages, he was a threatening presence working down the right channel, forcing Alaba to stay honest and measure his runs forward. A good majority of Dortmund’s most credible chances came as a direct result of Pulisic making bursting runs through the midfield towards Bayern’s box, but the anticipation just wasn’t there from his teammates in the attacking third. The youngster will have to take this one on the chin and look forward to Dortmund’s next match vs. Stuttgart.

Tip of the Cap: Mats Hummels. Obviously a lot of the headlines from the result will be centered around the attacking players, but Hummels was absolutely class for Bayern at the heart of the back line. His characteristically commanding presence in defense made it hard for Dortmund to retain possession in Bayern’s half and he made a handful of timely challenges. In particular, he did incredibly well to deal with the usually-troubling presence of Michy Batshuayi, muscling him off the ball more than once. Perhaps the only thing missing from Hummels’s performance was a goal, and he got forward well, especially in the second half.

Golf Clap: Robert Lewandowski. Normally, I’d say hat-trick “hero,” but Lewandowski’s hat-trick was quite routine on this occasions. Two of the three goals he scored were served on a silver platter for him, and Franck Ribery will surely argue that he got the slightest of touches on the ball with his shoulder for Lewandowski’s second goal; Ribery had done the bulk of the work with a fantastic solo run into Dortmund’s box, charging past Lukasz Piszczek and playing the ball just across the byline. Even though Lewandowski’s finishes were rather routine, it’s exactly the kind of scoring form we want our number 9 in heading into the Champions League quarter-finals against Sevilla. He also looked quite sharp with his bursting runs and his willingness to close down Dortmund when they were in possession inside of their own half; something you wont always get out of him.

Maybe just slightly offside, but it was a clever, chipped finish:

Standing Ovation: Thomas Muller. Muller turned in yet another complete performance and was the chief architect of Bayern’s early surge of dominance, setting up Robert Lewandowski’s opener with a brilliant through ball and softly volleying home Bayern’s third goal off of a lofted cross from James Rodriguez. Lewandowski was arguably a hair offside when Muller played him in for the first goal, but Muller still showed great vision to put the ball in an area where only Lewandowski could get to it. His finish in the 23rd minute for Bayern’s goal capped off a brilliant sequence of team play, spearheaded by high pressing from both he and James Rodriguez. The most encouraging thing, too, from Muller’s performance was the fact that he was still barking out tactical instructions to his his teammates, even when Bayern were 3-0 up inside of the first 25 minutes; a real captain’s performance!

This goal was just class:

Meister of the Match: James Rodriguez. James’s growth at Bayern cannot be overstated. He was sensational vs. Dortmund and it seemed like he could’ve even kept running for another 30 minutes after the final whistle had gone. Two assists and a goal doesn’t even quite do his performance justice because he did everything right throughout his 66 minute shift. Perhaps the only thing he did wrong was getting a slight touch on the ball that ultimately ruled Ribery’s goal offside in what would’ve been Bayern’s 2nd goal of the match. His passing was impeccable, his dynamic runs through the midfield and into the attacking third were timed to perfection, and he tracked back when he had to. Complete performance from the Colombian; keep it comin’ Jimmy!

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