Goals from Thomas Muller and Robert Lewandowski settled a battle of the massive two in Champions League Group E as Bayern Munich claimed a dominant opening-game victory at Barcelona.
The German champions managed the sport, with Muller scoring his seventh profession objective in opposition to Barca courtesy of a first-half effort that discovered the web off Eric Garcia’s again.
Lewandowski made certain of the win with a typical predatory end, poking his 74th Champions League objective into an empty web after Jamal Musiala’s drive had cannoned again off the publish.
His seventy fifth got here late within the recreation, as he as soon as once more confirmed his expertise in entrance of objective with a lashed end after Serge Gnabry’s shot had come again off the publish and fell to him within the field.
Barca, taking part in their first Champions League for the reason that departure of talisman Lionel Messi, have been flat and supplied little, failing to muster a single shot on the right track.
The Catalan facet have now misplaced three consecutive dwelling video games in European competitors for the primary time of their total historical past.
They ended the sport with 4 youngsters on the pitch, which did at the least inject some urgency and elevate a subdued crowd of simply wanting 40,000 due to Covid-19 restrictions.
But they have been nonetheless totally outclassed and by a Bayern workforce that weren’t even at their greatest.
The German facet lead the group, with the opposite recreation, between Benfica and Dinamo Kiev, ending 0-0.
‘We are what we’re, that is the fact’
It is now 13 months since Bayern ruthlessly uncovered the rising frailty on the coronary heart of Barcelona, placing eight previous them in probably the most eye-opening Champions League knockout video games in latest reminiscence.
Little did Barca know that issues would solely worsen for them within the months to observe, with a dangerous monetary state of affairs bringing concerning the departure of Messi to Paris St-Germain this summer season.
They now look a shell of a as soon as nice facet – sleepwalking by way of the motions and weak to being simply brushed apart by any facet with a plan and expertise, or a world-class one taking part in in third gear as Bayern have been right here.
Messi began up entrance with Luis Suarez in that 8-2 loss in 2020. On Wednesday, Barca paired two former Premier League failures in Memphis Depay and Luuk de Jong, and that was largely as a result of ex-Middlesbrough ahead Martin Braithwaite is injured.
Not that it mattered as Bayern reduce the availability, left the house forwards adrift, set about urgent excessive, and patiently picked aside a defence designed to be a 3 however extra usually pushed into being a 5.
“It is what it is,” stated Gerard Pique, a kind of three centre-backs. “We are what we are, that’s the reality.”
Fellow defender Garcia was extra defiant, saying: “I think the scoreline is unfair. The first goal deflected off me, the second goal came back off the post and fell to Lewandowski.
“I do not suppose we must always have misplaced by such a giant scoreline.
“If we didn’t hold the ball in midfield enough, at the end of the day, we were playing Bayern – maybe the best team in Europe. We knew it was going to be really tough.”
Bayern are in one thing of a transition section of their very own, with their speedy resolution to a departing supervisor and ageing components of their squad being to recruit the perfect bits from nearest home challenger RB Leipzig.
In new boss Julian Nagelsmann they’ve a person whose beliefs make for a straightforward handover from successor Hansi Flick.
The 34-year-old has the expertise and the instruments to make this Bayern facet an actual challenger for the Champions League this season. If that is them in third gear, think about once they hit fifth?
They at the moment are undefeated in 19 European away matches – a file run in all European competitions – and can certainly solely get higher.
As for Barca, they’re stalling and it’s laborious to see how they get themselves again on monitor. Second place in Group E is much from a certain factor.
- 1ter Stegen
- 24GarcíaSubstituted forMinguezaat 66′minutes
- 5BusquetsSubstituted forPaez Gaviriaat 59′minutesBooked at 82mins
- 20RobertoSubstituted forDemirat 59′minutes
- 21de Jong
- 16González López
- 18AlbaSubstituted forBalde Martínezat 74′minutes
- 17de JongSubstituted forCoutinhoat 66′minutes
- 6Puig Martí
- 13Murara Neto
- 26Peña Sotorres
- 28González Iglesias
- 30Paez Gaviria
- 31Balde Martínez
- 5PavardSubstituted forHernándezat 66′minutes
- 2UpamecanoBooked at 78mins
- 4SüleSubstituted forStanisicat 82′minutes
- 6KimmichBooked at 5mins
- 42MusialaSubstituted forGnabryat 70′minutes
- 25MüllerSubstituted forSabitzerat 82′minutes
- 10SanéSubstituted forComanat 82′minutes
- Michael Oliver
Match ends, Barcelona 0, FC Bayern München 3.
Second Half ends, Barcelona 0, FC Bayern München 3.
Attempt missed. Joshua Kimmich (FC Bayern München) left footed shot from exterior the field is excessive and broad to the left. Assisted by Kingsley Coman.
Joshua Kimmich (FC Bayern München) wins a free kick within the defensive half.
Foul by Philippe Coutinho (Barcelona).
Foul by Marcel Sabitzer (FC Bayern München).
Philippe Coutinho (Barcelona) wins a free kick within the attacking half.
Attempt missed. Robert Lewandowski (FC Bayern München) header from the centre of the field misses to the left. Assisted by Joshua Kimmich with a cross following a nook.
Corner, FC Bayern München. Conceded by Gerard Piqué.
Attempt missed. Serge Gnabry (FC Bayern München) left footed shot from exterior the field is simply too excessive. Assisted by Joshua Kimmich.
Goal! Barcelona 0, FC Bayern München 3. Robert Lewandowski (FC Bayern München) left footed shot from the centre of the field to the highest proper nook.
Serge Gnabry (FC Bayern München) hits the fitting publish with a proper footed shot from the centre of the field. Assisted by Kingsley Coman.
Attempt missed. Marcel Sabitzer (FC Bayern München) proper footed shot from the fitting facet of the six yard field is shut, however misses to the fitting. Assisted by Serge Gnabry with a by way of ball.
Dayot Upamecano (FC Bayern München) wins a free kick within the defensive half.
Foul by Gavi (Barcelona).
Substitution, FC Bayern München. Josip Stanisic replaces Niklas Süle.
Substitution, FC Bayern München. Kingsley Coman replaces Leroy Sané.
Substitution, FC Bayern München. Marcel Sabitzer replaces Thomas Müller.
Gavi (Barcelona) is proven the yellow card for a nasty foul.
Leon Goretzka (FC Bayern München) wins a free kick within the defensive half.