On a sunny, warm afternoon, Bayern proved how efficient they have become by playing a composed second half away to the newly promoted side. Robert Lewandowski and Thomas Müller came off the bench to excel.
Captain Munich came on to replace the hardly effective Arjen Robben at the half. He scored with a one-time shot at goal, further buttressing his spot in the starting team in Wednesday’s clutch Champions’ League game against Madrid. He is in smashing form at the moment, with four goals and four assists in his last three (!) games. 45 minutes and two assists? That is the meaning of an excellent rating.
The no longer black-eyed Pole became the highest scoring non-German player of all time, surpassing Claudio Pizzarro’s 104 league goals. He came off the bench to head home Bayern’s 10th goal from a corner after a superb assist from Basti Rudy. He has now played 28 Bundesliga games and scored 28. His goal was applauded on the bench by Sandro Wagner, and it has placed him on the path to the 30-goal mark, the third consecutive season he will achieve that. The way he celebrated his goal showed he knew what a record-breaking goal he had scored.
Basti had a mixed start, riddled with smart passing at times and frivolous giveaways. Nonetheless, his attitude whenever he lost the ball was impressive, going strong in the tackle to try to win back possession. His precise corner in the 73rd minute afforded Lewy the chance to break records, giving Rudy his second consecutive assist from a corner. He scored his first Bayern goal in the 89th minute, putting a neat finish on a Thomas Müller cross.
All smiles 😎
El mago was denied a few times by Hannover’s determined Philipp Tschauner, who pulled off a solid save in the 43rd minute after Thiago took a great shot. He did not have his best passing performance on such a sunny afternoon, but my word, he did show off some tekkers. He played ballerina football on the day, showing off flicks, turns and mouth-watering dribbles that even the home crowd showed approval of. He really had fun out there and put no foot wrong. Good shift.
Rafinha delivered a versatile performance, switching flanks frequently and helping in tackles from midfield to defense. He played in a gorgeous cross in the early stages which missed the bar narrowly after Thiago connected with a header. He has played as maturely as you would expect in the past few weeks.
It was a typical day at the office against smaller teams for Boateng. He marshalled affairs at the back very well in the absence of Mats Hummels. He was paired with the young prodigy Lars Lukas Mai in central defense, and the two played a very professional game, though they had little to deal with. As a bonus, he had a 100% tackle success rate in the game, his first in a while.
Lars Lukas “Golden Boy” Mai
The young defender brightened up a lot of Bayern faces around the world when he was gifted a Bundesliga debut. He is now the first player to have been born after the year 2000 to have played in the league. Away from the niceties though, the youngster was composed when on the ball, looked mature for the most parts, and barely panicked.
The future sure looks good in defense.
He pulled off another world-class performance in the face of infrequent Hannover attacks. He went down to his right to deny a certain Hannover goal in the 27th minute, after a slick flick at goal. He responded well whenever tested, though the frequency of those tests wildly diminished in the second half.
He played in an uncharacteristic no.6 position as he did in the last few minutes against Leverkusen in mid-week. He had the most touches by any player on the pitch by the 35th minute, with 48. Also, his attacking prowess was far from weak, as he played in a few quality crosses that led to chances. He also took on a few shots probably with the same accuracy of, for instance, Sebastian Rudy. That is not bad for a towering center-back, at all.
The Spaniard stopped an ominous opposition attack with a crucial block in the 25th minute. Going forward, his speed helped the attack greatly, with him actually succeeding in a few take-ons. He played an excellent cross into the box (more like a one-time pass) to create the first goal. It was a great assist that showed how well-worked that goal was, from the quality of the cross lifted to Bernat.
His best highlight of the first half was a blisteringly graceful aerial pass to Sandro Wagner in the box. The resulting header was saved, but it was a good display of the Colombian’s brilliance. He took a breather in the 70th minute, getting some rest for Wednesday’s game after Javi Martínez replaced him.
He came close to scoring on a few occasions in the first half, with some physical headers in the box. He played strongly against a physical and staunch Hannover defense. He also dipped back and joined the midfield in passing and controlling the ball. This allowed a lot of players to switch positions to control the game while being energy-efficient. He was subbed off after a frustrating and warm afternoon, preventing him from scoring in his 5th consecutive match.
It was another average performance from Arjen, lots of energy but little result. His passing was decent, nothing creative, as were his contributions to the attack. He was subbed at the half for Captain Müller, and it was not a good appeal for a starting spot in the upcoming Champions’ League tie.
Starke, Martinez, Hummels, Ribéry, Kimmich