The Bundesliga delivered a compelling title race last season between two teams. Is it even more wide open this season?
Saturday’s upside-down results seem to indicate as much, with 10-man Bayern Munich losing 5-1 (!) at Eintracht Frankfurt, RB Leipzig hammering Mainz 8-0, Borussia Dortmund jumping back up in the table and Borussia Monchengladbach retaining its lead at the top.
Bayern Munich sees red card, walloping by Eintracht
Bayern suffered its worst Bundesliga loss in over a decade, and it was bad from the start.
Jerome Boateng had a foul upgraded from a yellow card to a red in the ninth minute, and Filip Kostić put Eintracht Frankfurt ahead later in the first half by finishing a fortunate deflection (via FOX Soccer):
It's all going wrong for Bayern so far.— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) November 2, 2019
After a 9th-minute red card to Jerome Boateng, Filip Kostic puts Frankfurt ahead thanks to a wicked deflection off David Alaba. #SGEFCB pic.twitter.com/vSjsykjiLF
Eintracht doubled the lead before Robert Lewandowski pulled one back for Bayern.
But the seven-time defending Bundesliga champions couldn’t capitalize on any momentum after halftime, allowing David Abraham to put Eintracht back up 3-1 before Martin Hinteregger’s header at the hour mark sealed a victory:
Bayern hasn’t conceded five goals or lost by four since April 4, 2009, in a 5-1 away defeat to VFL Wolfsburg. The capitulation and lack of imagination were rather astounding Saturday, given Bayern has all but trained us out of ever expecting that from them.
It’s one game, and everyone has bad days, even the giant clubs. But there might be less wiggle room than ever this season.
RB Leipzig pummels Mainz 8-0
Oh hello, lack of wiggle room. RB Leipzig jumped ahead of Bayern on goal differential with a deafening 8-0 victory Mainz in East Germany.
Timo Werner recorded a hat trick, Christopher Nkunku’s screamer in the 35th minute was the pick of the goal litter, and you can watch them all right here (via FOX Soccer):
But the biggest stunner was how ruthlessly casual RB Leipzig’s dominance was. This game was 7-0 by the 50th minute, and everything Leipzig tried seemed to work.
The match still fell well short of the Bundesliga record for margin of victory, which is still Borussia Monchengladbach’s 12-0 win over Borussia Dortmund to close the 1977-78 season.
But not much else went wrong for Leipzig, which is also due to get United States international Tyler Adams back from injury in the coming weeks. Good time to be them.
Gladbach win at Bayer to stay atop the table
As good as Leipzig looked, Borussia Monchengladbach is still leading the Bundesliga with 22 points.
Oscar Wendt and Marcus Thuram, son of French World Cup winner Lilian Thuram, scored first-half goals in a 2-1 away win at Bayer. Leon Bailey was also red carded in the seventh minute of stoppage time for the hosts.
Can Gladbach mount a genuine title challenge this season? They’ve already lost to RB Leipzig and Borussia Dortmund in the league, their toughest competition yet. But they keep accruing points against the other teams, so they’re giving themselves a shot.
Don’t forget about Dortmund
Borussia Dortmund scored three times in the second half to beat VFL Wolfsburg 3-0 and assume second place in the Bundesliga table with 19 points.
Thorgan Hazard had the opener in the 52nd minute, while Raphaël Guerreiro added the second a few minutes later and Mario Götze closed the show with a penalty in the 88th minute.
Jadon Sancho didn’t get off the bench amid rumors of a Manchester United transfer, and Dortmund is definitely better off with him in the attack than without.
They sure seemed OK on Saturday though, and capable of making good on this title challenge after last year’s fell just short.
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