Thomas Müller scored a contender for goal of the season as FC Bayern München came from behind to beat promoted SV Darmstadt 98 3-1 on Matchday 22.
True to their pre-match word, Bayern refused to allow their upcoming UEFA Champions League Round of 16 first leg against Juventus dictate the early narrative at the Allianz Arena. Darmstadt were entrenched in their own final third as Arturo Vidal, Robert Lewandowski and Arjen Robben tested Christian Mathenia, but the Lilies only grew in confidence the longer it remained goalless and stunned the partisan home crowd by taking the lead with their first effort on goal. Sandro Sirigu whipped a telling ball into the near-post area, where former Bayern youth player Sandro Wagner stooped to head beyond the reach of Manuel Neuer.
Despite the setback, Bayern stuck to their guns and continued to dominate the play as Joshua Kimmich forced another excellent save out of Mathenia, before Müller controlled well from Rafinha to level early in the second half. The decibel levels inside the stadium went up a notch following the introduction of injury-plagued winger Franck Ribery, and the red shirts responded in kind. After Robben slid wide from 18 yards and Lewandowski had a goal chalked off for offside, Müller sent an exquisite overhead effort into the net to put Bayern ahead for the first time. Lewandowski then met Ribery's cross to rubber-stamp the league leaders' 11th successive home win of the Bundesliga season.
Man of the match
Who else but Müller? His first goal was good, but his second was out of this world. A brilliant piece of control on the chest from Vidal’s pinpoint cross and an outrageous finish to not only spare Bayern’s blushes, but take his personal tally for the campaign to 17.
The final scoreline does not do justice to what was an utterly dominant Bayern display. Pep Guardiola’s wolfish troupe could have racked up a cricket score on another day, but a come-from-behind 3-1 success is hardly a bad dress rehearsal for Juventus in the Champions League.
- Bayern have won their last 24 Bundesliga matches against promoted sides, netting 80 goals.
- Lewandowski has scored 22 Bundesliga goals this season, including seven in 2016.
- Serdar Tasci made his first Bundesliga appearance in 923 days.
- Darmstadt have scored with their first shot on goal a league-high eight times in 2015/16.
- Bayern lined up with their 22nd different defensive pairing of the season.
- Wagner is the first player to score a header past Neuer this term.
- Bayern have won their last 50 in which Müller has scored.
- Ribery made his first appearance at the Allianz Arena since 11 March 2015.
Bayern: Neuer (c) - Rafinha, Kimmich, Tasci (Bernat 53’), Alaba - Vidal - Robben (Alonso 80’), Müller, Costa, Coman (Ribery 53’) - Lewandowski
Darmstadt: Mathenia - Garics, Rajkovic, Caldirola, Junior Diaz - Sirigu (Sailer 73’), Jungwirth, Kempe, Holland - Vrancic (Rosenthal 60’) - Wagner (c)