Alphonso Davies was a key factor in Bayern Munich's Klassiker win over Borussia Dortmund. - © Lukas Schulze/Bundesliga/Bundesliga Collection via Getty Images
Alphonso Davies was a key factor in Bayern Munich's Klassiker win over Borussia Dortmund. - © Lukas Schulze/Bundesliga/Bundesliga Collection via Getty Images

Bundesliga Match Facts powered by AWS: Alphonso Davies tips balance Bayern Munich's way at Borussia Dortmund


Alphonso Davies' devastating forward bursts for Bayern Munich, Corentin Tolisso cancelling out Borussia Dortmund's Jude Bellingham, and the Bundesliga champions' coach Julian Nagelsmann tweaking his tactics late on — the Bundesliga Match Facts powered by AWS from Saturday's titanic Klassiker.

1) Bayern risk pays off
"By defending high, we won significantly more balls than we gave away," said Nagelsmann after watching his league-leading Bayern team put four points between themselves and their nearest challengers in the Bundesliga table. Crucial to the 3-2 victory was Alphonso Davies.

Davies evened up Bayern's attacking after the opening half-an-hour. - DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga

Although Bayern and Dortmund both lined up with a four-man backline, the champions played more often with their French trio of Lucas Hernandez, Dayot Upamecano and Benjamin Pavard as three centre-backs with Davies pushing up to join Tolisso and Leon Goretzka in midfield.

Though in the initial half-hour Kingsley Coman provided most of the attacking thrust down the right-hand side, Davies' forward momentum — teaming up with Leroy Sane and, later, Jamal Musiala — in the final hour of the game gave it an even 31 per cent split on both flanks in terms of Bayern's attacking zones.

Watch: Alphonso Davies on Der Klassiker

It did, of course, give Dortmund "an unbelievable amount of space" to work in as Marco Reus noted, but — as the hosts' captain added — "we didn't use it."

2) Pressed into action

After an open first half, the second 45 minutes at Signal Iduna Park was a cagier affair. That brought the industry in the centre of the pitch to the fore for both teams.

Tolisso might have added a fourth in the final seconds as he broke clear following a Dortmund corner for which BVB goalkeeper Gregor Kobel had gone up field. The 2018 FIFA World Cup winner's tired finish could be forgiven as he racked up a sapping 7.4 miles over the 90 minutes. It was only the France international's third league start — and second full match — of the 2021/22 Bundesliga campaign. It was quite some effort, and bettered only by Dortmund's Thomas Meunier (7.64 miles).

Jude Bellingham and Corentin Tolisso delivered a Klassiker battle royale in midfield. - DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga

Unsurprisingly, Tolisso and opposite number Jude Bellingham were the most pressed players of the game, working under pressure from an opponent — often each other — 42 times more than their teammates in the match.

Bellingham's combative streak was clear for all to see, and he won a game-high 16 challenges to keep the Borussia engine room ticking at a high tempo. The England international even managed to muster the most goal attempts of any Dortmund player with three, though the peerless Robert Lewandowski topped that category with five.

Watch: Der Klassiker highlights

The positive aggression employed by both teams is clear in their passing stats: Dortmund completed 79 per cent of their 440 passes, while Bayern's 502 attempts found their intended target 82 per cent of the time, both tallies somewhat below the duo's usual benchmarks.

Goretzka was the most efficient player on the pitch in terms of ball use with a 4.02 pass efficiency ratio; opening goalscorer Julian Brandt topped BVB's chart at 1.42. Pressure on the ball carrier also leads to mistakes, and Bayern exploited those better. They finished with an xG of 3.05 compared to Dortmund's 0.94.

3) Bayern shut up shop

On the front foot for most of the game, Nagelsmann understandably ordered his team to rein in their attacking instincts and be more compact after going 3-2 up thanks to Lewandowski's 77th-minute penalty.

While Davies spent the first half virtually in the Dortmund half, the Canada international was far more conservative with a lead to protect, tucking in alongside Niklas Süle, who had replaced Hernandez, to make a back four.

We saw a more compact, less attacking Bayern Munich in the closing stages of Der Klassiker. - DFL Deutsche Fußball Liga

Serge Gnabry, who had come on for Coman, and Musiala — Sane's replacement — kept their forward runs to a minimum. Tanguy Nianzou, a centre-back, slotted into midfield to stiffen up the centre of the park and ensure Bayern closed out a Klassiker win.

"We didn't start the game well. But then we were very good and had a lot of chances, even if Dortmund were dangerous on the counter-attack," said Nagelsmann. "At the end, we were better and played with control. We deserved to win the game."