Bayern Munich kicked off the new year with a 4-0 win against Hertha BSC, where Robert Lewandowski added to his goal tally this season infront of a sold-out Olympiastadion.
The hosts had the first real opening in the match but Davie Selke’s header flew tamely over the crossbar, while at the other end of the pitch Robert Lewandowski poked a shot just wide of Rune Jarstein’s far post.
Ivan Perišić peppered shots at Hertha’s goal after half time with no reward, but Bayern Munich eventually broke through their hosts’ defences when Thomas Müller squeezed a shot underneath Jarstein and into the back of the net.
Lewandowski saw a goal ruled out after the intervention of the Video Assistant Referee, but the Poland international did get on the scoresheet after Lukas Klünter needlessly gave away a penalty in the last 20 minutes of the game.
Thiago Alcântara added a third as Hertha imploded in on themselves and Ivan Perišić scored their fourth, while Manuel Neuer impressively kept out Pascal Köpke to keep his clean sheet intact on matchday 18.
Starting XI: Jarstein (7); Klunter (5), Boyata (6), Torunarigha (7), Plattenhardt (6); Ascacibar (7), Lukebakio (7), Darida (7), Grujic (6), Dilrosun (7); Selke (5).
Substitutes: Wolf (6), Mittelstadt (6), Köpke (5).
Key Talking Point
It must have felt like possession for possession’s sake for the away fans at points, but Bayern Munich were just struggling to find a way past their hosts.
Jürgen Klinsmann’s side were set up to frustrate Bayern Munich in the final third and even when the Rekordmeister did break through, Philippe Coutinho, Robert Lewandowski and Ivan Perišić could only fire tame shots straight into the arms of Hertha’s goalkeeper.
Hansi Flick and co were clearly coming out of their annual hibernation over Christmas, but Bayern Munich were eventually able to find their feet and cruised to three points – largely thanks to Hertha’s players shooting themselves in the foot.
Starting XI: Neuer (7); Pavard (6), Boateng (7), Alaba (6), Davies (9); Muller (8), Thiago (9), Goretzka (6); Perisic (7), Lewandowski (8), Coutinho (7).
Substitutes: Dajaku (6), Cuisance (6), Gnabry (6).
As he continues to show with every single performance, Thiago Alcântara is perhaps as irreplaceable at Bayern Munich as Robert Lewandowski – acting as both the brain and the beating heart of this side.
Thiago owns our midfield currently without him we’d be torn apart #BSCFCB
— c spence (@chasespencer_) January 19, 2020
My thoughts at halftime
– Davies and Thiago > the rest
– I didn‘t even notice Goretzka was playing #BSCFCB
— D¹⁰ (@ThiagoTimes) January 19, 2020
The 28-year-old dictated the ball and was involved in almost every meaningful attack Bayern Munich were able to create, even single-handedly picking out impressive passes in behind Hertha’s defence to set his teammates away.
It was Müller’s strike that proved to get things rolling for Bayern Munich, but Thiago was the visitors’ standout performer and even crowned his trip to the German capital with a goal for himself.
Bayern Munich’s first match at the Allianz Arena this year will come against David Wagner’s Schalke in next week’s Topspiel, while Hertha BSC travel to face an out of form VfL Wolfsburg.