FULL TIME: BAYERN MUNICH 3-1 BAYER LEVERKUSEN
Despite Bayern not receiving the third goal until the 90th minute, they cruised past Leverkusen in this one. The victory, however, is marred by the injuries to Tolisso and Rafinha.
The Champions League returns this week as Bayern plays Benfica. On to the next...
90’- GOAL BAYERN MUNICH! James Rodriguez makes it 3-1 with a header from a Thiago cross. Thiago made a nice run through the Leverkusen backline, and Robben fed him a perfect pass. His cross was inch perfect, and James smashed it past Hradecky.
80’- RED CARD! Bellarabi is set off for a lunging tackle on Rafinha where he put his studs into his ankle. It’s been a couple of minutes now, and Rafinha is still down on the ground He’s in a lot of pain and being helped off the field.
David Alaba comes on for him.
64’- There have been several good opportunities for Bayern over the last 10 minutes. Also, Jerome Boateng just sent a shot into the upper deck at the Allianz Arena. It was beautiful.
59’- Kovac brings on Javi Martinez for Serge Gnabry. Martinez will drop into the center of midfield allowing James and Thiago to push up even more in the attack.
It was a relatively quiet afternoon for Gnabry.
46’- The second half kicks off.
HALFTIME: Bayern Munich 2-1 Bayer Leverkusen
Corentin Tolisso and Arjen Robben scored to give Bayern Munich the 2-1 lead over Bayer Leverkusen. The visitors only real chance of the match came on the penalty that Wendell converted. Of course, for Bayern, losing Tolisso to the apparent knee injury is a disaster. With one talented younger player already out for an extended period of time in Kingsley Coman, nobody wanted to lose another. We’re sad.
40’- Oh no. Oh no. Oh no. After a solid 40 minutes, Tolisso has to leave the match with a knee injury. He stretched out to block a run from Volland, and some knee-to-knee contact when his leg planted in the ground looks like it buckled his knee. Tolisso was in a lot of pain and had to be helped off the field.
James Rodriguez comes on for him.
30’- Müller rips a shot from distance and forces Hradecky into a great save to keep him out.
24’- If you’re Leverkusen, this has to be disappointing. Following a hot start, they’ve completely capitulated to Bayern. If Bayern win this game, Leverkusen will have acquired 0 points out of 4 games.
20’- GOAL BAYERN MUNICH! Arjen ROBBEN! Tah tries to head away a long ball over the top, but it lands right in front of Robben. The winger takes one touch before curling it just inside the far post from outside of the penalty area. Bayern take the 2-1 lead.
10’- GOAL BAYERN MUNICH! Tolisso’s initial shot is blocked, but the deflection lands at his feet. His second shot finds the back of the net to equalize!
5’- Goal Leverkusen 1-0. Wendell converts.
4’- SAVE BY NEUER! Neuer makes an astonishing double save to deny Volland, but the referee is waiving off play. What is happening? OH COME ON! Encroachment? The ref never blew his whistle? Nonsense. Leverkusen is retaking it.
Manuel Neuer makes not one, but two HUGE saves on an early Leverkusen penalty... but it gets called back because the referee never blew the whistle!— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) September 15, 2018
Leverkusen score on the 2nd attempt. It's 1-0 to the visitors! #FCBB04 pic.twitter.com/yGZq4hhnCz
3’- PENALTY! Oh no. Thiago is whistled for a penalty for a handball in the box. In a sliding attempt to block Volland’s shot, Thiago had his arm raised and blocked the ball with his hand.
Bayern Munich and Bayer Leverkusen have the ball rolling at the Allianz Arena.
One hour until kickoff: Lineups are out!
The lineup holds a few surprises. Rafinha is starting in place of David Alaba at left-back. On offense, Serge Gnabry gets the nod for Franck Ribery, playing at left-wing opposite Arjen Robben. Thomas Müller will play centrally ahead of Thiago and Corentin Tolisso, while James Rodriguez remains on the bench.
The international break is finally over, which means that Bayern Munich can finally resume its quest to a sixth consecutive Bundesliga title. In its path stand Heiko Herrlinch’s Bayer Leverkusen, who have endured a rough start to the season. Can the Bavarians continue their winning run, or will the pressure of being sandwiched in between an international break and a tough away Champions League fixture be their downfall?
To begin, let’s recap the situation. Bayern Munich are currently second in the Bundesliga with a game in hand over Borussia Dortmund. A win would see them take back top spot for at least the coming week, while a draw would come down to goals scored (Bayern and Dortmund have the same goal difference).
As for team news, Niko Kovac confirmed that everyone is fit, except for Kingsley Coman. James Rodriguez is heavily expected to start for the first time under his new coach, while Mats Hummels is doubtful because of concerns over his fitness following an Achilles tendon injury suffered during the international break. In any case, Niklas Sule and Jerome Boateng should be more than enough for any fixture, not just this one.
It’s Bayern time.
Location: Allianz Arena, Munich, Germany
Time: 3:30 pm local time, 9:30 am EST
TV/streaming: Find Your Country
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