First home defeat as Bayern win 3-0

No points for Schalke against the reigning champions. FC Schalke 04 lost their home tie against Bayern Munich 3-0 at the VELTINS Arena. The goals came from Robert Lewandowski, James Rodriguez and Arturo Vidal. The result means Schalke have to rebuild their record at home which was nine games unbeaten at home before tonight’s result.

Formation and line-up

Weston McKennie made his Bundesliga debut and Nabil Bentaleb came back into the starting XI after having impressed after coming on as a substitute against Bremen. Benjamin Stambouli and Yevhen Konoplyanka were the two players to make way. Aside from these two alterations, the side was the same as the one who won in Bremen.

Bayern’s quickfire double

With the fans behind them, Schalke sought to get at Bayern from the get go. However, Bayern were ready to raise the tempo too and the game quickly became an end-to-end affair. Initially, due to some good saves from both goalkeepers, neither side were able to break the deadlock.

The Royal Blues had a very good chance to open the scoring as Amine Harit went close. However, soon after, the guests fired themselves into a 2-0 lead following some clinical finishing. Robert Lewandowski scored from the spot after the video referee decided Naldo had handballed from close range. Only four minutes later, James Rodriguez extended the visitors’ lead with a deft finish to make it 2-0. Bayern grew in confidence after the flurry of goals and began to control proceedings.  Schalke remained dangerous and Guido Burgstaller hit the back of the net but the goal was unfortunately ruled out as he was adjudged to be narrowly offside. Minutes later, the Austrian was denied on the line by Kimmich as it appeared Schalke were simply unable to convert their chances like Bayern had done earlier.

Schalke had the chances but the opposition score

At the beginning of the second half, Schalke had a bit of fortune as Thomas Müller hit the post from a header. The close shave was a wakeup call for the hosts who proceeded to have a number of good goalscoring opportunities. Guido Burgstaller had the best chance who failed to beat Sven Ulreich from close range. Instead of scoring, Schalke then conceded against the run of play to make it 3-0 to Bayern. Arturo Vidal played a one-two with James and Vidal volleyed into the top corner.

Reflection and looking forward

3-0 sounds like a clear scoreline but the loss to a high quality opposition was a much closer one than the scoreline lets on. Soon after Schalke had chances to reduce the deficit, Bayern would go down the other end and finish and that was the difference between the sides. The Royal Blues were wasteful in front of the goal but Bayern were clinical.

After the win in Bremen and the loss versus Bayern, the past few days have been a miy´xed bag for Schalke. On Saturday, Schalke face TSG Hoffenheim as Schalke hope to get another three points on the board.