Bayern Munich came from two goals behind to beat Mainz 5-2 on Sunday, with a brace from Robert Lewandowski and further goals from Joshua Kimmich, Leroy Sane and Niklas Süle taking the record champions back to the top of the Bundesliga after Jonathan Burkardt and Alexander Hack had given them a scare.
Bayern 5-2 Mainz
Goals: 0-1 Burkardt (32'), 0-2 Hack (44'), 1-2 Kimmich (50'), 2-2 Sane (55'), 3-2 Süle (70'), 4-2 Lewandowski (pen. 76'), 5-2 Lewandowski (82')
Mainz had the first chance of the game, Burkardt bursting through onto Robin Quaison's pass, but finding Manuel Neuer in his customary imperious manner to make the save with his leg. Leroy Sane went even closer at the other end, with Jerry St. Juste almost turning the Bayern winger's shot past his own goalkeeper Finn Dahmen, who leapt onto the ball just before it crossed the goalline. Corentin Tolisso then wasted two chances for Bayern, but Burkardt was not in such a profligate mood at the other end as he raced through and hammered a volley past Neuer to give the guests a surprise but not undeserved lead. Lewandowski was left surprised minutes later when his curling effort did not send the Mainz net rippling, with Dahmen pulling off a top-drawer save at full stretch. An equally outstanding save from Neuer prevented Quaison from doubling Mainz's lead five minutes before the interval, with the fearless strugglers causing more than just a few problems for the record champions. The latest warning was not heeded, though, and Mainz did indeed grab a second before the break with Hack heading Daniel Brosinski's free-kick unstoppably past Neuer.
Hansi Flick reacted with Leon Goretzka and Süle sent on for Benjamin Pavard and Jerome Boateng at the start of the second half, but it was Mainz who went close first through Danny Latza. Bayern struck with their first attack of the second half, though, with Kimmich starting and finishing the move which saw Serge Gnabry's cross flicked Kimmich's way by Lewandowski, for the Germany international to nod in from close range. Mainz's lead was wiped out five minutes later by Sane, who cut across from the right and sent a low, left-footed shot beyond Dahmen's reach into the bottom left-hand corner. Quaison drilled a shot off the underside of the crossbar and just inches in front of the Bayern goalline as Mainz remaining defiant in adversity, while Leandro Barreiro was spared the blushes of turning an Alphonso Davies cross into his own goal when VAR ruled the goal out for an offside position of the Canadian. There were no such doubts about the goal Süle scored to put the hosts in front, with the aid of a deflection, as an enthralling encounter entered into its final 20 minutes. There were no protests when Barreiro slid into Gnabry and gave away a penalty, which Lewandowski duly dispatched, before the Pole volleyed in Thomas Müller's cross for his 19th goal of the season, taking Bayern back to the top of the pile after another early scare.
- Bayern are on the longest unbeaten run of any Bundesliga team (12 matches).
- The Bavarians nevertheless set a new club record by falling behind for the eighth game in a row.
- The last time Bayern recovered from two goals down to win was in 1988, when they beat Bayer Leverkusen 4-3 having trailed 3-1 after 45 minutes.
- Sane scored his third goal this season from outside the penalty area – more than anybody else in the Bundesliga.
- Four of Kimmich's 15 Bundesliga goals have been headers.
- The record champions have claimed a league-high 18 points from a losing position in 2020/21.
- Lewandowski has scored five in his last four meetings against Mainz.
Watch: Kimmich: “We didn’t play well in the first half”
Bayern: Neuer (c) - Pavard (Goretzka 46'), Boateng (Süle 46'), Alaba, Davies - Kimmich, Tolisso (Choupo-Moting 87') - Gnabry (Musiala 76'), Müller (Costa 87'), Sane - Lewandowski
Unused subs: Nübel, Hernandez, Dantas, Richards
Out: Coman (thigh), Nianzou (thigh). Roca (muscular)
Coach: Hansi Flick
Mainz: Dahmen - St. Juste, Fernandes, Hack, Mwene (Papela 89') - Burkardt (Mateta 80'), Barreiro, Latza (c), Boetius (Onisiwo 71'), Brosinski (Stöger 80') - Quaison (Szalai 89')
Unused subs: Liesegang, Lavalee, Bell
Out: Niakhate (suspended), Öztunali (thigh)
Coach: Jan Siewert
Watch: Quaison: "We have to focus on ourselves"