Three points was nothing less than Carlo Ancelotti expected for his first league game in charge of Bayern Munich, and three points is exactly what he got in front of a sold out Allianz Arena as the Bundesliga opener exceeded expectations.
Goals galore for Bayern Munich
Xabi Alonso opened the scoring after nine minutes with a beautifully goal taken from outside the area on the half-volley, before Robert Lewandowski doubled Bayern’s lead just four minutes later.
Lewandowski then got his second of the night just 44 seconds into the second-half, after latching onto a beautiful ball from Thomas Müller. Bayern’s goalscoring continued as Philipp Lahm got on the scoresheet midway through the second-half. Something that doesn’t happen often for the versatile right-back.
Franck Ribéry – seemingly happier under Ancelotti – netted Bayern Munich’s fifth goal of the night with a well executed finish after Müller was given too much space in the area. Lewandowski capped off his performance with a hat-trick after putting his penalty away with 15 minutes left to play.
Pep Guardiola vs Carlo Ancelotti
Pep Guardiola had often been criticised for his handling of Müller, after leaving him out the semi-final clash in the Champions League last season, but there’s no doubt that the Germany international is very much in Ancelotti’s plans.
As opposed to Guardiola’s varying formations, Ancelotti opted for a 4-3-3 against Werder Bremen, which saw Ribéry and Müller on either flank of Lewandowski.
Under Ancelotti, Bayern Munich were more direct, whilst they looked like they were enjoying their football a lot more. Perhaps having someone barking orders at you on the sidelines isn’t always the best way forward.
The midfield trio of Xabi Alonso, Arturo Vidal and Thiago
Summer signing Renato Sanches started on the bench following an impressive European Championship with Portugal, whilst young Joshua Kimmich came on midway through the second-half.
Ancelotti opted for the same midfield trio that started in the Supercup against Borussia Dortmund – Arturo Vidal, Alonso and Thiago. Those three are likely to be the Italian’s go to players this season, offering experience, box-to-box, and playmaking prowess.
Is Felix Wiedwald Werder Bremen’s only hope?
From the off, Werder Bremen never looked like going for a win. Had it not have been for Felix Wiedwald, this opening game could easily have seen double figures.
Lewandowski could have had a hat-trick in the first-half alone, whilst Müller missed an open goal. Bremen defended with a high line, which saw Bayern play balls through the defence with ease. The pace and dominance was too much to handle for Bremen’s new look defence, which saw two new faces in the middle.
Bayern Munich XI: Neuer; Lahm, Hummels, Martinez, Alaba; Alonso, Vidal, Alcantara, Muller, Lewandowski, Ribéry.
Subs: Ulreich, Bernat, Kimmich, Green, Sanches, Öztürk, Rafinha
Werder Bremen XI: Wiedwald, Caldirola, Bauer, Yatabaré, Fritz, Johannsson, Diagne, Bartels, Gebre Selassie, Sané, Grillitsch
Subs: Drobny, Kainz, Thy, Petsos, Sternberg, Eggestein, Moisander
Goals: Alonso, Lewandowski (x3), Lahm, Ribéry.