Robert Lewandowski scored his third Bundesliga hat-trick of the season as Bayern Munich beat Borussia Dortmund. - © getty images
Robert Lewandowski scored his third Bundesliga hat-trick of the season as Bayern Munich beat Borussia Dortmund. - © getty images
bundesliga

Robert Lewandowski: MD24's Man of the Matchday underscores place among greats in Bayern Munich's Klassiker triumph

Robert Lewandowski said he is "not thinking about Gerd Müller's record" after his hat-trick helped steer Bayern Munich to a sensational come-from-behind victory at home to Borussia Dortmund on Saturday, but he will inevitably be forced to ponder it sooner rather than later this season.

The 32-year-old's treble in securing a 4-2 victory in Der Klassiker took him to 31 league goals after just 24 rounds of matches, leaving the Polish hitman just nine short of Müller's 40-goal haul set in the 1971/72 season.

The Bayern No.9 scores so frequently - he's averaging one every 63 minutes in the Bundesliga this season - that his achievements often get drowned out in the vast sea of his ridiculous exploits. Another Lewandowski record? What's new?

Watch: Highlights of Bayern's win over Dortmund

Yet if you feel that sense of fatigue about to set in ahead of learning about yet more Lewandowski heroics, fight back, dear reader; it is not often that we are consciously aware of witnessing history in the making.

For example, nobody has ever broken the 30-goal barrier this early in a season in Germany's top flight. For context, Müller 'only' had 26 after 24 games during that most prolific campaign almost 50 years ago.

Not only that, but Lewandowski has now registered at least three goals in a single league game for the 12th time, he has found the net at least once in 13 of his last 14 league games and has hit 20 in 14 matches against former club Dortmund.

Furthermore, his current tally of 31 goals would have been enough to earn him the top scorer's crown in all but five seasons in Bundesliga history - and he still has 10 games to play.

"First of all I want to win the next game with my team," the striker said at the final whistle when asked about potentially overtaking Müller's best-mark. "I want to score the goals, but it’s too early to think about this."

Perhaps, but if not for him Bayern would undoubtedly have struggled to turn an early 2-0 deficit into a 4-2 win. Lewandowski swept in from close range in the 26th minute to pull a goal back, equalised from the penalty spot just before half-time and drilled in low with a pin-perfect finish from the edge of the box in the final minute to round off what was ultimately a deserved win.

"We know that maybe the first 15-20 minutes we didn't play well," he told bundesliga.com. "But after the second goal we conceded, we knew that we had to push forward, we had to try and score the next goal.

"And then the second half, we had the game under control and we said 'come on boys, we have to try and score another goal' because we want to get three points. We did and I think that was something special, and we showed everyone that we want to stay in first place."

Watch: Lewandowski: "We showed everyone we want the title!"

Bayern retained their two-point lead at the summit over RB Leipzig, who had temporarily gone above them with a 3-0 victory in Freiburg earlier in the day, while the gap between Hansi Flick's side and sixth-placed Dortmund is now 16 points.

Flick himself was frustrated with his side's slow start, but insisted he preferred to "focus on the positives" in the wake of his side's 17th Bundesliga win of the season.

"It was a sensational comeback from the whole team," the 55-year-old said. "Lewy finished the chances off, that's what he's there for. Obviously, we're happy he scored three goals in such an important game after we were 2-0 down. The whole team deserve credit."