It’s the aftermath of the biggest game in German football, and proceedings have already devolved into a farce. “Controversial” would be putting it mildly — this edition of Der Klassiker will leave both Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund fans dissatisfied by the result. Referee Felix Zwayer is the man to blame, mainly due to two penalty calls — one that was given (Hummels’ handball in the box) and one not given (Lucas Hernandez’s foul on Marco Reus).
Bayern Munich may have won 3-2, but the dubious refereeing decisions mean that this game will forever bear the stigma of controversy. It’s so bad that even Thomas Muller, Mr. Bayern himself, cannot clearly state that his team deserved to win. Speaking to the media following the game, Muller expressed clear doubts about the team’s performance:
Müller: "Dortmund's first goal has probably helped us. We got into the gaps relatively easily afterwards, the goals were scored after mistakes. We should have taken the lead in the first half - In the second half, I don't know whether we deserved to win from the way we played"— Bayern & Germany (@iMiaSanMia) December 4, 2021
Of course, what’s done is done, and no amount of complaining will change the result. Sometimes, referees have bad games. So why bother talking about it?
The thing is, deserving a win means more than a moral victory. It’s a sign of the team’s performance. Muller clearly criticizes the way Bayern played in the second half. Think about it — if the team plays like that against BVB, then what will happen against the likes of Man City? Real Madrid? Liverpool? If this is all that we’re capable of, then club’s Champions League ambitious are be doomed.
This was not a win that inspires confidence. In fact, it raises more questions than answers. After getting off to a flying start earlier in the season, Julian Nagelsmann’s side has begun scraping wins by one-goal margins. The BVB game was the third one in a row, and the most controversial of the lot. The team does not look convincing, and that is the coach’s problem. Things need to change in the coming months.
Bayern Munich can play better than this.
By the way, we happen to have a podcast on all things Bayern Munich, where we discussed the outcome of this game in great detail. Why not check out our postgame show below or at this link?