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January 24, 2014
• Stadion im BORUSSIA-PARK, Mönchengladbach
Referee: P. Gagelmann
• Attendance: 54010
M. Götze 7'
T. Müller 53'
That's all that we have time for, but we hope that you have enjoyed our live Bundesliga coverage of Bayern Munich's comfortable 2-0 victory over Borussia Monchengladbach, as Guardiola's men start 2014 in the league, in style. I've been Simon Harrison, and I hope to see you all again next time.
Max Kruse and Patrick Herrmann went close for the hosts, with Marc-Andre Ter Stegen making several great saves in the Gladbach goal. An efficient performance from the league leaders, who make the gap between themselves and third place even wider.
FULL TIME! Bayern take the three points, sending Gladbach to their first home defeat of this Bundesliga season. An early goal from Mario Gotze and a penalty from Thomas Muller wrap up the spoils, despite the home side being slightly resurgent in the second half.
90' + 1'
Dante is penalised for handball, blocking a Kruse cross with his forearm, as we head into two minutes of stoppage time. Arango whips in the free-kick, but Neuer is fouled whilst trying to collect the delivery by Xhaka.
Robben is found by a long ball from Thiago, before the Dutch international weaves inside and looks to thread the ball through to Pizarro, but the pass is cut out. We're almost in stoppage time now.
PIZARRO! The substitute receives the ball deep in the penalty area, before turning smartly and firing into the gangly arms of Ter Stegen. The Gladbach keeper does just enough, with the ball ricocheting off the goalkeeper and the turf, allowing for Ter Stegen to smother the loose ball.
ALABA! Great move from Bayern, mostly by Pizarro! The substitute holding play up, twisting and turning with Stranzl marking him tightly, before he flicks the ball into the path of the onrushing Alaba. The Austrian twists and turns, before unleashing a right-footed effort into the side netting!
Good header from Rafinha! Kruse was lurking at the back post, but the Brazilian-born defender managed to turn a cross away for a corner. Kruse was really in a great position there, in plenty of space, but was robbed of the opportunity.
Pizarro is brought on for the visitors, and almost feeds in Robben with his first touch, turning smartly before firing a ball into the path of the Dutchman, who looked to take a big touch beyond the approaching Dominguez. It wasn't to be however, as Robben's control escapes him.
Yellow Card Christoph Kramer
Only ten minutes left on the clock, and Gladbach are desperately pushing for their first goal of the evening. Kruse picks up possession in the area, but a well-timed sliding intervention from Lahm denies the forward the opportunity to turn and shoot. Good defending from the Bayern captain.
Yellow Card Toni Kroos
Kroos goes down heavily after being pole-axed in the centre of the park, but the Germany international is slowly getting back to his feet, as everybody linked with Bayern will be glad to see. The league leaders are a little bit lacking in central midfield options, given a few injuries.
HRGOTA! He's only been on the field for ten seconds, but the youngster exchanges possession with Raffael, before blasting an effort towards Neuer's near post. It takes a deflection, going out for a corner, but Gladbach can't capitalise on the set piece.
RAFFAEL! The Brazilian sees the ball escape from his clutches, and Boateng clears, as yet another half chance materialises for the hosts. They've come so close, but aren't quite able to find the goal which would inevitably led to an all-action last quarter of an hour.
Around 20 minutes left to play, and Bayern are looking comfortable once again, stroking the ball around and giving Gladbach no chance. Favre may look to make a few changes soon, as they are looking a little bit leggy in midfield, and they can't afford to leave any gaping holes due to fitness levels.
Wendt finds himself challenging with Neuer on the edge of Bayern's penalty area, as an ambitious run from the Swedish left-back saw him trying to run in behind Dante. Moments later, Kramer is penalised for a near-stamp on Muller's foot.
Bayern are settling back into their rhythm, after ten minutes of Gladbach looking dangerous. Guardiola's side look as though their patterns of play come extremely naturally, knowing exactly where their teammates are without having to look up. They're looking well-oiled, but susceptible to the counter.
Despite being two goals behind, Favre's men aren't prepared to take this defeat lying down, with quick transitions causing Bayern a few problems. Raffael, Herrmann and Kruse are looking dangerous on the break with their pace, and this game looks to have more goals in it.
HERRMANN! Another golden chance for the young midfielder! Kruse finds Xhaka in the centre circle, before the central midfielder sprays the ball out to the right hand side. A cross from the byline picks out Herrmann on the penalty spot, but he can only drag his effort wide of the target! He has his head in his hands.
HERRMANN! He sprints down the right hand side, before thrashing a ferocious effort on the half volley off the woodwork! Neuer was getting absolutely nowhere near that, how unlucky! Bayern break up the other end, and Shaqiri curls an effort narrowly wide of the top corner.
Good save by Ter Stegen! The young keeper is equal to Bayern's efforts once again, and Gladbach are able to clear their lines. It was an incisive move down the left from the visitors, before a cross flashed into the near post area was dealt with well by the Gladback shot-stopper.
We're at the hour mark, and it's very hard to look beyond Bayern for the three points in this game. Gladbach looked bright in the opening stages of the second half, but Muller's penalty took the steam out of their resurgence. A goal for the hosts would change the game immeasurably, however.
Awful effort from Herrmann! Arango battles well down the left hand side, before dinking a delicate cross to the back post in search of the youngster. The ball bounces sharply off the turf, and the right midfielder hoofs his effort into orbit.
KRUSE! The Germany international is given the ball on the edge of the penalty box by the marauding Herrmann, before taking a touch out of his foot. He rockets an effort towards goal with his trusty left foot, but Neuer is able to watch the strike all the way and pounce upon it.
Rafinha goes down in his own area, after clashing with Stranzl in the hosts' penalty area, as the intimidating Gladbach centre-half sent a header towards goal. Neuer claimed it easily, but the Brazilian requires a bit of treatment, as he may have been knocked into his teammate. A soft one, perhaps, and the home crowd aren't pleased.
Gladbach now have narrowly over half an hour to find two goals, to try and preserve their unbeaten home record this season. It looks beyond them, as Neuer hasn't look uncomfortable on too many occasions tonight, but the hosts have been able to score freely at home.
Penalty Goal Thomas Müller
GOOOOOAL! THOMAS MULLER CONVERTS! It's now 2-0 to Bayern, as the Germany international coolly sends Ter Stegen the wrong way to give the home side a cushion from the penalty spot. A shame, given Ter Stegen's excellent saves in the build up to the handball decision.
PENALTY TO BAYERN! In the pinball following Ter Stegen's double save, Xhaka blocks a follow up strike with his hand, giving the league leaders another opportunity.
WHAT A SAVE! DOUBLE SAVE FROM TER STEGEN! The 21-year-old denies Gotze twice from point blank range, before Thiago looks to follow up but sees his effort blocked!
THIAGO! Good save by Ter Stegen, as the Spaniard's dipping effort is beaten away, low down to the goalkeeper's right hand side. That swerved and bounced off the turf right in front Ter Stegen, making it a rather smart stop.
Rafinha does just about enough to step in and rob Wendt of the ball, as the Swede looks to drive in behind the Bayern defensive line. Both Alaba and Rafinha have been able to break forward at their own discretion, with the veteran Arango perhaps not having the legs to prevent the Brazilian in particular.
Well held by Ter Stegen! Rafinha is invited on down the right flank, as Arango is slow to close down the Brazilian, whipping in a cross towards Muller. The German forward heads towards goal on the swivel, but Gladbach's goalkeeper plucks it out of the air beautifully.
Herrmann breaks down the right in the opening moments, firing a low cross towards the penalty spot, but Neuer is able to claim. Gotze is then found in the penalty area, looks to shimmy inside and shoot, but Xhaka does just enough to force the goalscorer back towards his own goal.
And we're back underway in the second half! Gladbach have it all to do in the second 45 minutes, to overturn a lead given to the visitors by Mario Gotze. Kruse striking the post will have given the home side some hope, but Guardiola's machine have been imperious for worryingly expansive spells.
Be sure to join us for all of the second half action, as Gladbach look to guard their unbeaten Bundesliga home record, which stretched to nine games before tonight. It will be a tough task, given the long periods of Bayern domination, but Favre's side have shown flashes of intent.
Favre's men were second best for long periods, but came back into things in the last ten minutes. Arango and Kruse have been the dangermen for the hosts, while the machine of Bayern have really clicked into gear at times. Engrossing to watch, as the league leaders stroke the ball around, without error or a second thought.
HALF TIME! The referee calls an end to a compelling first half, with Bayern holding onto a fragile one goal lead. A great finish from Gotze has given Guardiola's side something to hold on to, despite Gladbach testing Neuer on several occasions and striking the post in the later stages of the half.
ARANGO! The creative midfielder tests Neuer, after an excellent move from right to left from Favre's side, before firing at the Bayern goalkeeper - who couldn't hold it. The ball is palmed out into a ruck of players, but it escapes one loitering man in white, Hermann.
Gladbach break once again, with Raffael almost being able to burst into the Bayern penalty area beyond Dante. The Brazilian is out-muscled by his marker, as another attack peters out for the home side. They're by no means out of this game as a contest.
MULLER! Gotze and Muller combine well yet again, as the right-sided forward sweeps in behind the former Dortmund man. He tries to lob Ter Stegen with a looping effort that could either have been a cross or a shot, earning himself a withering glance from Gotze.
Good clearance by Ter Stegen! The young goalkeeper clears a loose ball away from the onrushing Gotze, as another incisive Bayern pass wriggles its way through Gladbach's lines. The remaining four minutes of the first half period could prove pivotal in settling this match!
POST! Max Kruse strolls into the penalty area for the hosts, after being found by a quick throw-in by Wendt, before cannoning a powerful left-footed strike off the foot of the post, perhaps with a tiny bit of help by the struggling Neuer!
Great challenge by Wendt! He makes an excellent block to prevent Muller from bursting into the six yard box, after a great ball from the left by Shaqiri was almost bundled home by Gotze. That so easily could have been Bayern's second.
Less than ten minutes until half time, and the home side could really do with finding an equaliser out of nothing. Their performance hasn't been encouraging, but the likes of Arango and Raffael can create something out of the blue, a moment of inspiration. Doing so would certainly re-ignite this crowd, who are presumably a little disillusioned.
Yellow Card Oscar Wendt
Wendt picks up a yellow card, after the Swede rises with his elbow held high, clashing into the challenging Muller in an attempt to win a high ball. No complaints from the Gladbach man, and rightly so.
ARANGO! A trademark free kick stings the palms of Neuer. The Bayern goalkeeper certainly wasn't sure, as the delivery dripped and swerved its way towards goal, but the Germany international palms it over the crossbar for a corner. The set piece finds Herrmann, but the youngster wastes his first opportunity of the match.
Good interception by Alaba! The Austrian Sportsman of the Year is able to slide in and prevent Raffael's through ball from finding his strike partner in the box. Gladbach pick up the pieces, before the left-back fouls the Brazilian.
Arango is penalised, as Lahm goes down off the ball. The Venezuelan was pressing the Bayern captain, treading on Lahm's boot as he sprung away towards Muller. The free kick is whipped towards goal by Shaqiri, but the Swiss can't hit the target.
Still no test for Neuer, as the imposing goalkeeper is merely called upon to occasionally clear the ball. Kruse and Raffael are seeing none of the ball, with the pressing of Bayern causing the hosts to panic in possession and gift the ball back to their tormentors.
Heading towards the half hour mark, this certainly isn't the all-action fixture that some thought it would be. Gladbach haven't been able to carve out too many opportunities, with Herrmann demonstrating this point yet again, cutting back a ball from the byline which finds Thiago.
Delightful footwork from Gotze! The diminutive forward receives possession, before weaving around two challenges with consummate ease, before he's stopped by a sliding tackle on the edge of the box. This is imperious stuff to watch from Bayern, it can't be said enough.
This is like a training session for Bayern, they are showing absolutely no rustiness following the winter break. Guardiola's men are passing the ball around almost telepathically in midfield, with the hosts unable to get anywhere near them. The hosts' midfield have had no impact on this game yet whatsoever.
GOTZE! A delightful passage of play sees Gotze try a dipping half volley after a clever flick around the corner by Muller to his teammate. Gladbach have absolutely no answers, Bayern are stroking the ball around and Gotze is carving out chances for himself with ease.
Gladbach are only able to hold the ball for a matter of ten seconds, as individual errors supply the Bayern machine with even more possession. The home side are losing the ball around their own penalty area, with the relentless pressing of Bayern's system rendering them rather useless.
Good work by Neuer! The Germany international keeper is ridiculously quick off his line, racing almost the length of Bayern's half to hoof a hopeful Gladbach long ball away from the chasing Kruse. Bayern continue to retain the ball, earning several corners in the early stages.
It certainly isn't apparent that Bayern are missing the likes of Schweinsteiger, Robben and Ribery in this game, with Muller and Shaqiri already testing their full backs, and Philipp Lahm continuing to hold his own in the centre of midfield. Bayern are dominating, as was perhaps expected.
The opening quarter of an hour has certainly been Bayern's with the travelling side having the lion's share of possession, and testing Ter Stegen on various occasions. Neuer remains untroubled in the Bayern net, with Favre's men seemingly having no answer for the visitors' fluid football.
RAFINHA! The Brazilian controls a loose ball, after being found 30 yards from goal by a clearance, following a Bayern corner. The right-back chooses to shoot, forcing Ter Stegen into a good stop, despite the ball being at a good height for the young goalkeeper. The league leaders continue to hold the impetus.
Gladbach are being bold, continue to press forward and keep the forward two of Kruse and Raffael, but Bayern are easily finding their extra man in the midfield third. It's a case of chasing shadows for the hosts at the moment, with Guardiola's men coming out of the traps brightly.
The atmosphere has just gone a little bit flat, as Bayern continue their run of scoring in every Bundesliga fixture they've participated in this season. A lapse of defensive concentration from Stranzl gave Gotze the space he needed to convert, and Gladbach need to try and respond quickly.
ARANGO! The Venezuelan tries his luck from range with his wand of a left foot, but his effort is blocked, skipping to Neuer comfortably. Bayern break up the other side, with Kroos dipping a strike towards Ter Stegen's near post, but the 21-year-old is equal to it.
Assist Thomas Müller
Goal Mario Götze
GOOOOOOOOAL! GOTZE ONLY NEEDS TWO CHANCES! He struck the woodwork moments ago, but has buried Muller's excellent cut-back with ease! His teammate got to the byline, before picking out the former Dortmund man in the penalty area, who merely had to guide the ball into the far corner. Not a good start for Gladbach!
GOTZE! WHAT A CHANCE! The Germany international skipped past Dominguez, burst into the penalty area, before clipping the foot of the post! Ter Stegen was beaten, but the woodwork comes to his rescue, as the ball strikes the outside of the post and goes out of play for a goal kick.
The hosts have been the only side to see possession inside the opposition penalty area in the first five minutes of this match, with Ter Stegen only having to clear his lines on one occasion. The Gladbach goalkeeper, of course, has chosen not to extend his contract at the club.
The atmosphere is excellent, and we can only hope for a game to match it. Bayern, predictably have been more keen to keep hold of the ball in the opening stages, but Gladbach are set up resiliently to weather the storm. Favre's credentials suggest that the Swiss coach knows exactly how to repel the away side.
Half chance for Gladbach, as Arango's free kick delivery almost finds the head of Stranzl! Boateng clears, before the hosts attack again. Kruse is fed through on goal with another direct pass, but Neuer is quick off his line to collect the through ball on the edge of his area.
And we are underway! It's an electric atmosphere, as the home fans sense that their team can be urged to victory this evening, to further add to their regular vocal backing of their side. Bayern are wearing their customary red, with the home side donning white. The visitors are depleted, but are by no means prepared to leave with anything less than a point. Peter Gagelmann is our referee for the night.
We are five minutes from kick-off, and should be in for a real treat this evening, as a weakened Bayern travel to one of the Bundesliga's best fortresses. The home side have got an excellent chance to taking three points from Guardiola's steamrolling Bayern outfit, to show that the top flight isn't as one-sided as people may claim.
With three points here tonight, Gladbach could really put pressure on second-placed Bayer Leverkusen heading into the weekend's fixture list. If Guardiola's men are to come out victorious, they would head even further away from the chasing pack, but a point definitely wouldn't be a bad result in this arena tonight. There won't be many harder places to travel to in Europe this season than here.
Bayern substitutes: Robben, Pizarro, Starke, Weiser, Contento, Hojbjerg, Sallahi.
Bayern starting line-up: Neuer; Rafinha, Boateng, Dante, Alaba; Lahm; Muller, Kroos, Thiago, Shaqiri; Gotze.
Gladbach substitutes: Daems, Rupp, De Jong, Nordveit, Younes, Hrgota, Heimeroth.
Gladbach starting line-up: Ter Stegen; Korb, Stranzl, Alvaro Dominguez, Wendt; Herrmann, Kramer, Xhaka, Arango; Kruse, Raffael.
TEAM NEWS: Philipp Lahm continues in midfield, with Guardiola seeming opting to position Mario Gotze as the false nine tonight. There's no Franck Ribery, Arjen Robben, Mario Mandzukic, Javi Martinez or Bastian Schweinsteiger for the away side, which means that Xherdan Shaqiri gets a start on the left hand side of the presumably forward three.
Tonight's hosts are unbeaten in their last eight Bundesliga fixtures, but face a Bayern side who have been unstoppable in the current campaign. The gap between the two sides is a staggering eleven points, despite the two being separated by merely two league places. Lucien Favre's men will need to pull a great performance out of the bag to topple the league leaders this evening, but it's certainly more than realistic.
I'm Simon Harrison, and I will be keeping you up to date with proceedings as Bundesliga football returns in the new year, with Bayern facing debatably their toughest test of the season thus far. Before last season, today's visitors failed to win in this stadium in a run which led back to 2006. With Gladbach in blistering home form, netting 25 goals in nine home games, Pep Guardiola will be feeling the pressure heading into this clash.
Hello and welcome to live coverage of Bayern Munich's visit to face Borussia Monchengladbach, as Bundesliga action returns following the winter break. But for Bas Dost's equalising goal five minutes from time, as Wolfsburg equalised in the last league game of 2013, tonight's hosts would have a 100% record at Stadion Borussia-Park this season. It's certainly no walk in the park for league leaders Bayern tonight.
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