Bundesliga

Costa hits stunner as Bayern down Darmstadt

FC Bayern München returned to the Bundesliga summit on Sunday evening after a hard-fought 1-0 victory away to a dogged SV Darmstadt 98 side.

SV Darmstadt 98 0-1 FC Bayern München

Goals: 0-1 Costa (71')

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Darmstadt may have been bottom of the table going into the game but Bayern did not have things all their own way, as the hosts began confidently, harrying their guests in possession and attacking with intent down the flanks. And although Manuel Neuer's goal was never seriously threatened, Darmstadt's well-organised defence kept Bayern at arm's length for most of an entertaining but goalless first half.

Carlo Ancelotti's side increased the tempo in the second period as they tried to force a breakthrough, but Darmstadt continued to defend stoutly and deny the reigning Bundesliga champions any space in the final third. However, Bayern's pressure eventually told midway through the half when Douglas Costa arrowed a sensational long-range effort into the top corner. To their credit, Darmstadt never gave up but could simply find no way through, allowing Bayern to return home with the points.

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