Bayern Munich got off to a successful start in the new Champions League season even without their coach Thomas Tuchel, who was banned from yellow and red. However, the performance against Manchester United on Wednesday evening (September 20th, 2023) was mixed.
During the ultimately deserved 4:3 (2:0) win, Tuchel’s assistants Zsolt “Jogi” Löw and Anthony Barry were on the sidelines – and the first half hour in particular always caused extremely tense expressions on both of their faces.
“In the end, we’re happy that we got the first three points. Of course, the game was a bit wild”said goalscorer Leroy Sané shortly after the final whistle. “We have to make fewer mistakes, all together.” He himself was definitely affected too.
Ulreich parries against Eriksen
After just four minutes, Bayern had to overcome the first moment of shock – visiting coach Erik ten Hag had already thrown his arms up in celebration. After a bad pass from Leroy Sané in his own penalty area, Christian Eriksen put his colleague Facundo Pellistri in a shooting position – Alphonso Davies, with the greatest (penalty) risk, slipped the ball from his foot. The rebound then landed back at Eriksen, but Sven Ulreich deflected his shot around the left post with excellent positional play.
Many more ball losses followed for Bayern, Harry Kane was completely in the air at the top and had a total of eight ball contacts at the end of the first half.
Onana-Patzer helps Bayern
But he used one of them to take the lead, which was completely undeserved at the time: After a one-two with Kane, Sané fired a shot from the edge of the penalty area that had neither sharpness nor precision. ManU keeper André Onana completely misjudged the ball – a goalkeeping mistake, which is very rare at this level, made it 1-0 for the hosts.
This low blow for the English, who had previously appeared courageous, had an effect. Just four minutes later, Jamal Musiala dribbled past three United defenders and set Serge Gnabry in the spotlight – Onana really had no chance against his low shot into the right corner.
Frustration and tough duels
The English now began to feel frustrated, which paralyzed their offensive actions and sometimes led to them being too harsh in the duels. Bayern, on the other hand, became more and more confident in their combinations, and in stoppage time in the first half, the now thawed Sané narrowly missed making it 3-0 with a shot just wide of the left post.
It would certainly have been the preliminary decision, but United briefly regained hope after the break. In the 48th minute, Marcus Rashford fed Rasmus Hojlund, who was lucky with his shot: Min-jae Kim deflected the ball unstoppable for Ulreich to make it 1-2.
Hand penalty after VAR intervention
Then the VAR intervened. After a missed chance from Musiala (51′), seconds later Eriksen received a header from Dayot Upamecano in his own penalty area. Referee Nyberg initially allowed the game to continue, but then, after studying the video, decided on a hand penalty – Harry Kane made it 3-1.
As a result, the Munich team pressed for the fourth goal, but missed the preliminary decision. Things got tight again in the 88th minute after Casemiron’s goal: the Spaniard converted the rebound after his own shot while lying down to make it 2-3.
Chaos until deep into injury time
The reaction to this was strong from Bayern. Instead of wobbling, they pushed forward, but were initially unlucky when Thomas Müller shot off the post. In stoppage time, substitute Mathys Tel put the lid on it: Tuchel in the stands and his assistants on the line took a breather.
But that wasn’t the end either: When stoppage time had already expired, Casemiro scored with a header from very close range to make it another goal – but shortly afterwards a chaotic game with a happy outcome for Bayern ended.
Müller celebrates anniversary victory
It was a special evening for Bayern icon Thomas Müller: the triumph over United was the 34-year-old’s 100th victory in his 143rd appearance in the premier class. Müller is only the third player in the history of the Champions League to break this mark. So far only superstar Cristiano Ronaldo (115) and Real Madrid goalkeeper idol Iker Casillas (101) have managed this. Against United, Müller only came on as a substitute for Harry Kane in the 87th minute. SID tn he