Bremen, Germany, Jun 16 (efe-epa).- Bayern Munich clinched their eighth consecutive Bundesliga title with a 1-0 road victory here Tuesday over Werder Bremen.
After recording their seventh straight victory since the resumption of the coronavirus-interrupted German-league season (and 11th straight league win dating back to early February), Bayern now have an insurmountable 10-point lead over second-place Borussia Dortmund.
Bayern had control most of the way in a match played behind closed doors at Weserstadion, although the Bavarian giants were reduced to 10 men due to the expulsion of young Canadian star Alphonso Davies for a second yellow card.
The visitors came out aggressively in search of the clinching victory, with star striker Robert Lewandowski firing a shot in the second minute that a defender cleared for a corner and all 11 players at times situating themselves in Werder Bremen’s half of the field.
The hosts, meanwhile, are in a fight to avoid relegation and showed their sense of urgency by battling for loose balls and seeking opportunities on the counter-attack.
Indeed, for much of the first half, the massive points disparity between Bayern (76 points) and 17th-place Werder Bremen (28 points) was not apparent on the field.
Amid a heavy downpour, Bayern tried to break down the home team’s defense with high-lofted balls into the area, but a header by Kingsley Coman in the 24th minute and a long-range shot by Jerome Boateng in minute 33 failed to find the back of the net.
The game’s lone goal, however, came in the 43rd minute when Lewandowski controlled a pass from Boateng with his chest, spun around and volleyed a shot past net minder Jiri Pavlenka for his 46th goal of the season across all competitions.
Bayern was more in control of the proceedings in the second half, keeping Werder Bremen pinned back in their own territory and nearly doubling their lead on an apparent back-heel goal by Lewandowski that was disallowed because Thomas Muller was ruled offside.
The host side, however, came alive at around the 70-minute mark and then got an extra boost when Davies was sent off nine minutes later.
But Bayern goalkeeper Manuel Neuer was up to the task, making a tremendous save on a header by Japanese forward Yuyo Osako in the 90th minute.
Despite being short-handed, Bayern managed to force a series of corner kicks in second-half injury time to eat up the remaining minutes on the clock and secure their 24th win in 32 Bundesliga games this season.
Afterward, Bayern’s head coach was full of praise for his squad.
“I’m very proud of the team. They played a sensational round – a sensational season. I think the team spirit and the mentality of the team, but also their joy of playing together, with their fighting spirit, especially throughout the previous three games, has been extraordinary,” Hans-Dieter Flick said.
Dortmund (66 points) will take on Mainz on Wednesday in the continuation of Matchday 32, but even with a victory they will still be seven points behind Bayern with just two games remaining in the season. EFE-EPA