Robert Lewandowski scores 26th goal of the season as leaders Bayern Munich beat Union Berlin
Robert Lewandowski scored his 26th goal of the Bundesliga season, and 40th in all competitions, to keep Bayern Munich four points clear at the top of the Bundesliga table, with Benjamin Pavard adding the second late on in a 2-0 win away to Union Berlin.
Union Berlin 0-2 Bayern Munich
Goals: 0-1 Lewandowski (40'), 0-2 Pavard (80')
As was expected, league leaders Bayern took control of the early possession in Berlin, but it was the home side who produced the first chance of the game as Marius Bülter forced a save from Manuel Neuer after good work down the right flank from Marcus Ingvartsen. Bayern thought they had gone ahead after 18 minutes when Thomas Müller poked home from close range, but he was in an offside position from Serge Gnabry's initial header towards goal. Bayern continued to maintain control with their high defensive line earning six offside calls against the home side, before taking the lead late in the half. Leon Goretzka beat Neven Subotic to a loose ball in the box and earned his side a penalty from the Serbian defender's challenge. Lewandowski stepped up against fellow Pole Rafal Gikiewicz, and slotted his spot-kick home for his 26th league goal of the season.
The game remained finely poised early in the second half, with Goretzka going close to a second for Bayern, while Grischa Prömel sent a half-volley across goal at the other end. Hansi Flick's troops maintained control of the game, though, while keeping composed enough to not leave themselves exposed defensively. Union top scorer Sebastian Andersson came on with 20 minutes to play, but the best chances fell the way of Gnabry before Pavard put the game to bed by heading home from a Joshua Kimmich corner with 10 minutes of normal time remaining. Neuer made sure of his clean sheet with a late save from Felix Kroos as Bayern restored their four-point cushion at the top of the Bundesliga table, ahead of Borussia Dortmund and the chasing pack.
- Bayern are now unbeaten in 16 competitive matches (12 in the Bundesliga).
- Four points is Bayern's biggest lead at the top of the Bundesliga this season.
- Bayern scored their 50th goal under Hansi Flick in the Bundesliga from just 16 games. That's the best record of any coach in the league's history.
- Lewandowski is only the second player in Bundesliga history to have scored 26 goals after 26 matches in a league season.
- Lewandowski has now scored 25 of his 28 penalties for Bayern in the Bundesliga.
- Pavard has scored two of his last three Bundesliga goals this season against Union.
- The Frenchman's goal was also the 750th goal of the current campaign, making it 3.2 goals scored per game in the league, the highest mark in the Bundesliga since the 1985/86 season.
Watch: Gnabry: "We love playing football"
Union: Gikiewicz - Hübner, Schlotterbeck, Subotic - Trimmel (c), Prömel (Kroos 85'), Andrich (Gentner 71'), Lenz - Ingvartsen (Mees 81'), Bülter (Ryerson 85') - Ujah (Andersson 70')
Unused subs: Nicolas, Reichel, Parensen, Polter,
Out: Becker (thigh), Friedrich (suspended), Gogia (match fitness), Malli (match fitness)
Coach: Urs Fischer
Bayern: Neuer (c) - Pavard, Boateng, Alaba, Davies - Kimmich, Thiago - Gnabry (Perisic 85'), Goretzka (Coman 71'), Müller ( Cuisance 89') - Lewandowski
Unused subs: Ulreich, Odriozola, Hernandez, Mai, Zirkzee
Out: Coutinho (ankle), Martinez (match fitness), Süle (match fitness), Tolisso (ankle)
Coach: Hansi Flick
Watch: Davies: "We can still improve"
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