Robert Lewandowski (l.), celebrating here with Philippe Coutinho, scored twice to pave the way for Bayern Munich's win over Olympiacos. - © imago images/ANE Edition
Robert Lewandowski (l.), celebrating here with Philippe Coutinho, scored twice to pave the way for Bayern Munich's win over Olympiacos. - © imago images/ANE Edition
bundesliga

Robert Lewandowski brace helps Bayern Munich past Olympiacos

Robert Lewandowski scored his 17th and 18th goals of the season as Bayern Munich consolidated their position at the top of UEFA Champions League Group B in a come-from-behind win at Olympiacos.

After thrashing English Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur 7-2 in their previous European outing, Bayern made a bright start in Piraeus, with Philippe Coutinho driving wide and testing Jose Sa inside the first 15 minutes. Youssef El-Arabi climbed above Lucas Hernandez to head past Manuel Neuer and give Olympiacos the lead against the run of play, but Bayern restored parity 11 minutes later as Lewandowski swept in from close range after home Sa could only parry a first-time volley from Thomas Müller.

Bayern lost defender Niklas Süle to a serious knee injury in their 2-2 draw with Augsburg last weekend, and when Hernandez went down early in the second half, coach Niko Kovac was taking no chances and immediately introduced Jerome Boateng. Lewandowski lifted the mood with another poacher’s finish moments later, after Olympiacos failed to clear a devilish Countinho corner. Corentin Tolisso added a superb third from the edge of the box, before Guilherme reduced the arrears with the aid of a huge Thiago deflection. Neuer made a big save from Daniel Podence in the dying stages as Bayern made it three Group B wins from three.

Match stats

  • Lewandowski has now scored 18 goals in 13 competitive matches for Bayern this season.
  • The four-time Bundesliga top scorer was on target the last time Bayern met Olympiacos - a 4-0 win in the 2015/16 group stage.
  • Bayern also won their last trip to Greece, and have now scored 17 goals in five matches against Olympiacos.
  • Germany's record champions are unbeaten in their last 11 European away games (W8, D3), scoring at least two goals in all but the goalless draw at Liverpool last season.
  • Gnabry became the 14th player to score four times in a match in the competition on Matchday 2, and the first to hit four in the second half.
  • Olympiacos have lost their last six games against Bundesliga clubs, scoring only three goals while conceding 14.

Line-ups

Olympiacos: Sa - Elabdellaoui (c), Meriah, Semedo, Tsimikas - Podence, Bouchalakis (Lovera 69'), Guilherme, Camara (Randjelovic 88'), Masouras (Guerrero 78') - El Arabi
Unused subs: Allain, Bruno Gaspar, Papadopoulos, Xenitidis
Out: Benzia (suspended), Fortounis (cruciate ligament), Valbuena (unknown)
Coach: Pedro Martins

Bayern: Neuer (c) - Kimmich, Pavard, Hernandez (Boateng 59'), Alaba - Martinez (Tolisso 46'), Thiago - Müller (Perisic 86'), Coutinho, Gnabry - Lewandowski
Unused subs: Ulreich, Davies, Goretzka, Coman
Out: Arp (fractured wrist), Cuisance (groin), Süle (knee)
Coach: Niko Kovac

Watch: Robert Lewandowski, on the path to greatness

As it happened!

OLYMPIACOS 2-3 BAYERN MUNICH
GOALS: 1-0
El-Arabi (23'), 1-1 Lewandowski (34'), 1-2 Lewandowski (62'), 1-3 Tolisso (75'), 2-3 Guilherme (79')

FULL TIME!

That was a frenetic final few minutes, but Bayern hold on to take all three points and with it their third win from as many games to stay top of their section.

90+2' COUTINHO FROM LONG RANGE

Sa dashes a long way outside of his box but makes a hash of a clearance. The ball comes to Coutinho, who still has work to do to wriggle clear of a marker. He tries to lob the goalkeeper, who's well off his line, but gets his angles wrong and fires wide from 45 yards.

90' STOPPAGE TIME

There will be an additional four minutes of play.

88' CLOSE FROM PODENCE!

Olympiacos go very, very close to equalising. After winning possession in midfield the ball is played out to the right to Podence, who jinks past two defenders, cuts inside and smashes a ball at Neuer from close range. The Germany No.1 makes a good save and gobbles up the rebound just before El-Arabi gets there.

86' PERISIC FOR MÜLLER

Bayern make their final change of the game, as Ivan Perisic comes on for Müller

84' LOVELY FROM THIAGO

The Spaniard spins a ball off the outside of his boot into Kimmich's path and the Germany international tries to lift a shot over the goalkeeper from a difficult angle on the right. Sa is alive to the danger though, and makes a routine save.

79' OLYMPIACOS PULL ONE BACK!

Just when you thought Bayern were home and dry, the hosts are back in it! Guilherme has a speculative shot from about 25 yards out and it takes a wicked deflection off Thiago, completely wrong-footing Neuer and nestling into the net.

78' JUST OVER FROM MÜLLER

Patient build-up from Bayern down the right, with neat interplay between Kimmich, Gnabry and Thiago. The latter eventually plays a cross into the middle for Müller, whose first-time shit spins just over.

75' GAME, SET AND MATCH!

Alaba scurries down the left and pulls the ball back to Coutinho, whose attempted shot is blocked. The rebound falls kindly to Tolisso on the edge of the box and the Frenchman curls a wonderful shot into the top corner.

73' BAYERN TURNING THE SCREW

The hosts are beginning to tire and Bayern are smelling blood, eager to go for the kill.

69' ATTACKING CHANGE FOR OLYMPIACOS

Defensive midfielder Bouchalakis is taken off and replaced by an attacker in Lovera.

66' GUILHERME SHOOTS

The Olympiacos midfielder is unchallenged about 25 yards from goal and lets fly with a right-footed effort. Neuer sees it all the way though, and his happy to let it sail past his post.

62' GOAL! LEWANDOWSKI PRODS BAYERN IN FRONT!

Olympiacos fail to deal with Coutinho's corner from the left and the ball comes to Lewandowski, who beats Sa to it and pokes it over the line from close range!

59' BOATENG ON FOR HERNANDEZ

With Süle a long-term absentee after damaging his cruciate ligaments at the weekend, Bayern are taking no chances with Hernandez and bring on Jerome Boateng for the Frenchman.

56' HERNANDEZ DOWN

The Bayern defender stays on the ground after what looks like a clash of knees. He's wincing in some pain and after receiving treatment on the pitch, he limps off to be seen to by the team doctors. Hopefully it's nothing serious.

54' KIMMICH MUST SHOOT... BUT DOESN'T!

A lovely dribble from Kimmich, cutting into the middle from the right. A space opens up for him to have a go with this left foot but he instead opts to pass to Alaba, who wasn't expecting the ball, and Olympiacos intercept.

51' BOUCHALAKIS FIRES OVER

Olympiacos get forward down the right this time, and Alaba can only half-clear the danger to Bouchalakis, who's about 30 yards out. He tries his luck from distance but blazes high and wide of the target.

48' BRIGHT START FROM OLYMPIACOS

The hosts have come out of the blocks aggressively here and are looking to get forward with greater intent than they did in the first 45 minutes. They've already caused Kimmich a couple of headaches down the Bayern right, but haven't tested Neuer yet.

SECOND HALF!

The hosts get the action under way again. Corentin Tolisso has come on for Javi Martinez in the Bayern midfield.

HALF-TIME!

It's all square in Piraeus at the break. Olympiacos took a surprising lead against the run of play midway through the half, but Bayern's dominance took its toll and they deservedly pulled shortly afterwards.

42' NOT QUITE CLICKING

Bayern are looking good in midfield and at the back but just can't quite seem to click into gear in the final third. You suspect that tiring legs in the Olympiacos defence in the second half might give the visitors more clear-cut chances.

38' COUTINHO JUST OVER

Alaba pulls the ball back from the left and Coutinho charges in at pace but can only flick the it over the bar under pressure from two defenders.

34' GOAL! LEWANDOWSKI EQUALISES!

Lewandowski nods Pavard's cross from the right down to Müller, whose instant volley is well saved by Sa. However, he can only palm it into the path of Lewandowski, who rifles in the equaliser.

33' BAYERN RESHUFFLE

Kovac has rearranged his attacking line-up, with Gnabry switching flanks to the right, Müller going central and Coutinho shifting out to the left. Will it bear fruit?

30' DANGEROUS FROM OLYMPIACOS

The hosts break at pace with a well-worked move down their left. There is again time and space for Masouras to gallop into and the visitors are fortuitous in that Hernandez's skewed attempted clearance lands right in the arms of Neuer and not in their own net.

27' AS YOU WERE

The game has continued as if nothing had happened, with Bayern dominating the ball and camping out in the opposition half. Olympiacos have everyone back defending though, so space as it a premium.

23' OLYMPIACOS TAKE THE LEAD!

Out of the blue, the hosts score. Tsimikas outmuscles Kimmich and delivers a brilliant cross, deep to the back post. El-Arabi is able to leap higher than Hernandez, heading powerfully downwards. Neuer gets a hand to it, but not before it crossed the line!

21' GNABRY LIVELY

The home side haven't looked terribly solid at the back and Gnabry seeks to take advantage by charging at Semedo. He has the unmarked Lewandowski to his right but tries to go on the outside and is eventually tackled.

17' OLYMPIACOS MAKE THEIR PRESENCE FELT

Bayern may be in control, but Olympiacos have had a couple of promising moments themselves. Elabdellaoui skips forward past Gnabry before being eventually crowded out inside the Bayern area, and moments later Guilherme slices over the bar after arriving late on the edge of the box.

13' COUTINHO TESTS SA

Coutinho dribbles forward in the inside left channel before cutting inside as he gets to the edge of the home penalty area. He curls a shot goalwards, but Sa is well placed to make the save.

9' BAYERN IN CONTROL

Niko Kovac's men have already settled into their rhythm and are hogging the ball, camped out in the Olympiacos half. They're probing for openings but haven't found a way through just yet.

6' COUTINHO FIRES WIDE

The Brazilian plays a brilliant pass from the left over to Müller, wide on the right. The 30-year-old works the ball back into the middle, where Coutinho arrives to shoot first time. His effort is deflected out for a corner, which comes to nothing.

3' GLIMPSE OF AN OPENING FOR BAYERN

Coutinho slides a ball into Gnabry's feet on the left. He jinks past his defender and cuts inside. He could shoot but opts to play it back to Coutinho, now on the edge of the Olympiacos area, but his pass isn't accurate enough and the hosts intercept. Bayern could have made more of that.

1' FREE-KICK FOR OLYMPIACOS

Kimmich is caught in possession early on and brings down his man just outside Bayern's penalty area. Masouras curls the ball in, but Bayern head clear.

KICK-OFF!

Here we go! Bayern get the ball rolling in Greece!

DEFENSIVE REJIG

Niklas Süle's injury means Benjamin Pavard moves in from right-back to centre-back alongside fellow Frenchman Lucas Hernandez. Joshua Kimmich will consequently play at right-back, with Javi Martinez coming into defensive midfield alongside Thiago.

MÜLLER STARTS

Having been on the bench for the last handful of Bundesliga matches, Thomas Müller is in the Bayern starting line-up here, replacing Kingsley Coman in the side.

HELLO AND WELCOME

Bayern are out to cement top spot in Group B, having won both of their continental outings so far this season. A win here would virtually guarantee their passage to the next round, so they'll be going all out for the points here.