Jamal Musiala's sixth Bundesliga goal of the season helped Bayern Munch consolidate second place with victory at Hoffenheim.
Bayern started in ominous fashion as Serge Gnabry stung the palms of Oliver Baumann inside three minutes. The Hoffenheim goalkeeper had to be alert to fend off a shot on the turn from Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting, before Gnabry miscued a Musiala cross, inadvertently jumping the queue in the six-yard box to deny Kingsley Coman a likely tap-in. Hoffenheim's resistance was broken with 18 minutes gone when Leon Goretzka headed on a Joshua Kimmich corner for the unmarked Musiala to sweep home with aplomb. The onslaught continued as Baumann kept out Goretzka from close range and Kevin Akpoguma cleared Gnabry's follow-up off the line. Georginio Rutter finally tested Sven Ulreich with a fierce near-post attempt, but normal service was resumed late in the half. Shortly after Musiala had tickled the side netting, Choupo-Moting spread the play out to Gnabry and continued his run, before applying a striker's finish in front of Ozan Kabak at the near post.
With a trip to Barcelona to come in next week's UEFA Champions League group stage, Bayern could be forgiven for taking their foot off the gas in the second half. Dayot Upamecano headed a Kimmich corner straight at Baumann with their first meaningful attempt, 13 minutes after the restart. Hoffenheim returned fire through Rutter, but he could only head Angelino's cross past the upright. The introduction of Sadio Mane provided an immediate spark as the Senegalese forward set up fellow substitute Marcel Sabitzer for a shot Baumann repelled with his right leg. At the other end, Upamecano made a crucial intervention to prevent a dangerous cross from finding Rutter in one of precious few attacking forays by the home side. Bayern proceeded to play keep-ball in the closing stages as Julian Nagelsmann celebrated a winning return to the club where he first made his name as a Bundesliga head coach - and a third away victory of the league campaign.
- Bayern won back-to-back Bundesliga games for the first time since Matchdays 2-3.
- Choupo-Moting has scored four goals in his last three competitive games.
- Musiala's 24th goal for Bayern was his first as a result of a corner.
- Mane started a Bayern game on the bench for the first time.
- Nagelsmann oversaw 136 games in charge of Hoffenheim between February 2016 and June 2019.
- Sebastian Rudy and Angelo Stiller are former Bayern players.
Watch: Jamal Musiala - 'I love scoring goals'
Hoffenheim: Baumann (c) - Akpoguma, Kabak, Nsoki - Skov (Kaderabek 62'), Prömel (Stiller 85'), Geiger (Rudy 25'), Angelino - Baumgartner (Kramaric 61') - Rutter, Dabbur (Bischof 76')
Unused subs: Pentke, Bruun Larsen, Eduardo Quaresma, Becker
Out: Bebou (knee), Bicakcic (fitness), Hübner (ankle), Philipp (finger), Vogt (suspended)
Coach: Andre Breitenreiter
Bayern: Ulreich - Pavard, Upamecano, de Ligt, Davies - Kimmich, Goretzka (Sabitzer 70') - Coman (Mane 61'), Musiala (Gravenberch 76'), Gnabry (Mazraoui 76') – Choupo-Moting (Tel 70')
Unused subs: Schenk, Stanisic, Ibrahimovic
Out: Hernandez (groin), Müller (stomach bug), Neuer (shoulder), Sane (thigh), Sarr (patella tendon)
Coach: Julian Nagelsmann
Japan's Bundesliga core that beat Germany and Spain
With eight Germany-based players in their World Cup squad, Japan had plenty of quality as they beat two of the tournament favourites.
When do clubs return from the winter break?
Here’s the full overview of what the 18 teams have planned before action resumes on 20 January 2023…
Who is Ritsu Doan?
Get the lowdown on the Freiburg attacker dubbed 'Japan's Messi' in his homeland...