Robert Lewandowski extended his prolific goalscoring record against Wolfsburg as Bayern Munich got back to winning ways with a 3-1 triumph at the Volkswagen-Arena, despite losing Arjen Robben to a red card.
Wolfsburg 1-3 Bayern Munich
Goals: 0-1 Lewandowski (30'), 0-2 Lewandowski (49'), 1-2 Weghorst (63'), 1-3 James (72')
Red card: Robben (57')
James Rodriguez, who started for Bayern despite returning late from international duty with Colombia, had the first shot of the game – a direct free-kick which Koen Casteels scrambled away. Joshua Kimmich was next to test Casteels before Lewandowski, who had just been denied once by the last line of the Wolfsburg defence, threaded his next shot through the Belgian custodian's legs to give the guests a deserved lead after half an hour, and end a two-game personal scoring drought against one of his favourite opponents. James could have doubled Bayern's lead, but a fine intervention from Casteels turned his effort wide with the Wolves penned back in their own half for sustained periods of the first half.
Bayern did not loosen their strangling grip on the Wolves in the second half with Lewandowski hastily netting his 18th goal against them, accepting a gift from William to round Casteels and slot the ball into the open goal. The game appeared over as a contest, until Robben earned a second yellow card to leave Bayern with ten men for the final hour. Daniel Ginczek and Admir Mehmedi were sent on by Bruno Labbadia and both combined with the latter teeing up Weghorst to give the hosts hope. Those were dashed by James as he latched onto Lewandowski's pass and beat Casteels inside his near post to restore Bayern's two-goal cushion, and put the points under lock and key.
- In 16 games against Wolfsburg, Lewandowski has scored 18 times: together with Augsburg, his favourite victims.The Polish forward has now scored more than once in a single Bundesliga game 48 times – only Gerd Müller (87) and Jupp Heynckes (51) managed more.Yannick Gerhardt made his 50th Bundesliga appearance in a Wolfsburg shirt.Elvis Rexhbecaj made only his third Bundesliga start – his second of the season, after the 0-0 Mainz. He debuted in the 3-0 defeat to Hoffenheim last season.For the first time this season, the average age of Wolfsburg's starting XI was younger than 25, at 25.7; Bayern's was 28.1.
Wolfsburg: Casteels (c) – William, Knoche, Brooks, Roussillon – Gerhardt, Rexhbecaj (Malli 71'), Arnold – Steffen (Ginczek 60'), Weghorst, Brekalo (Mehmedi 60')
Unused substitutes: Pervan, Verhaegh, Uduokhai, Tisserand
Absentees: Azzaoui (knee), Camacho (muscular), Guilavogui (ankle), Klaus (pubic bone)
Coach: Bruno Labbadia
Bayern: Neuer (c) - Kimmich, Süle, Hummels, Alaba (Rafinha 46') - Thiago, Martinez - Robben, James (Renato Sanches 84'), Gnabry (Goretzka 66') – Lewandowski
Unused substitutes: Ulreich, Ribery, Boateng, Müller
Absentees: Coman (ankle), Tolisso (knee)
Coach: Niko Kovac
Watch: James Rodriguez says Bayern have turned a corner