Bayern Munich’s title celebrations were temporarily postponed until at least two weeks from now as they fell short, losing 2-1 at Mainz. It was arguably one of Bayern’s weakest performances of the season and Mainz was the deserved winner having scored two goals in the first half and causing Bayern to force the issue for the rest of proceedings. Goals from Jonathan Burkhardt and Robin Quaison inside of the first 40 minutes sealed the deal for a resilient Mainz side that have turned their fortunes around recently under Bo Svensson.
Speaking after the match, Manuel Neuer reflected on his side’s significantly underwhelming performance and shed some light as to what happened on Burkardt’s goal (tz).From the get go, Neuer explained, it just wasn’t good enough from his side just a few days after playing so well in the win against Bayer Leverkusen midweek. “We planned a lot more, especially the first half wasn’t enough of us. It was clear that the Mainz team were hot. We didn’t create enough opportunities and were punished at the back,” he said. Mainz’s high press was a constant nuisance for Bayern, lead by Burkhardt, Quaison and Karim Onisiwo. Bayern was under constant pressure at the back and they also got caught out several times with long balls over the top.
For Burkhardt’s goal, Neuer did get his fingertips to it, but was unable to make a save as the strike had a fair amount of knuckle and movement on it. He said it was more of his site being obstructed than anything else in that particular situation. “I wasn’t blinded by the sun. The ball was close to [David] Alaba, I couldn’t see it well. I tried to put my arm up, I was unlucky,” he explained.
As far as clinching their ninth consecutive Bundesliga title, Bayern will now have to wait until at least two weeks from now unless RB Leipzig fail to beat VfB Stuttgart on Sunday. Bayern could potentially become “sofameisters” if Stuttgart do them a favor and take points off of Leipzig, but Neuer said that he much rather would’ve had his side seal the deal themselves. “I would have preferred to make it clear myself. The defeat hits us hard after the last few weeks,” he said.