The after-noon at the Volkswagen Arena started with a minute silence in memory of those, who died in the ongoing Coronavirus Pandemic. The stadium was empty, but still, the emptiness was not felt due to the innovative idea – Borussia Monchengladbach played their first home game today in front of 13,000 cardboard cut-out fans for the clash against Dortmund.
Innovation: Borussia Monchengladbach play their first home game today in front of 13,000 cardboard cut-out fans. pic.twitter.com/Y5twViFOzW
— Faisal Caesar (@faisalyorker1) May 23, 2020
Also, there was the trial of formulaic crowd noise, but the match lacked the spark, which Dortmund was expected to produce after the dominating display against Schalke 04 last week.
Dortmund dominated the ball but was curiously lacklustre in the final third with Erling Haaland increasingly exasperated and isolated upfront. Wolfsburg had been resilient and dogged proving why they are considered one of the best defensive sides in Bundesliga.
The opening quarter of the game remained dull.
Vamos 🐝🐝! +3 ⚽️ / Let's go🐝🐝! +3 ⚽️ pic.twitter.com/r21B4TdWay
— achrafhakimi (@AchrafHakimi) May 23, 2020
The battle between a lacklustre attack and sturdy defence did nothing to charm the viewers until Dortmund broke through in the 32nd minute when Raphael Guerreiro scored the opener after neat work on the right. It was his eighth Bundesliga goal of the season – his best return in a single league campaign. Then in the 78th minute Achraf Hakimi’s counter-attacking second clinched a precious triumph in a match where theMen in Yellow were kept at bay due to the resistance of home team. Monchengladbach were down to 10-men with minutes remaining, but their defensive work deserves the accolade.
The Bundesliga returns today!
While Borussia Monchengladbach are playing away at 17:30 BST, their home stadium is ready with cut-outs of their fans, thanks to this brilliant idea back in April 👏
— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) May 16, 2020
A sixth straight league victory for Dortmund ensured that they were trailing by one point against Bayern Munich, who would exhibit their real power later in the evening.
Allianz Arena welcomed a struggling Eintracht Frankfurt. Frankfurt for their part were well beaten by Borussia Monchengladbach last week and Adolf Hutter’s side is just 5 points above the relegation play-off place.
The reverse fixture earlier this season saw the Frankfurt outfit record a famous 5-1 victory in November, while the previous meeting in Munich saw Bayern win by the same scoreline the last term.
Today, Bayern tore Frankfurt apart and went ahead of Dortumd 4 points clear taking themselves with the much-needed confidence before the long-awaited clash Der Klassiker on Tuesday.
Thomas Muller and Alphonso Davies were once again the vital cogs for Bayern.
🇩🇪PARTICIP DIRETAS DE THOMAS MULLER NA BUNDESLIGA:
2⃣4⃣em 19/20 (7G | 17A)
1⃣5⃣em 18/19 (6G | 9A)
2⃣1⃣em 17/18 (8G | 13A)
1⃣7⃣em 16/17 (5G | 12A)
2⃣6⃣em 15/16 (20G | 6A)
2⃣3⃣em 14/15 (13G | 10A)
2⃣3⃣em 13/14 (13G | 10A)
2⃣4⃣em 12/13 (13G | 11A)
1⃣6⃣em 11/12 (7G | 9A)@ogolcombr pic.twitter.com/hfWTTyzSny
— Felipe Mazmanian (@felipemazmanian) May 23, 2020
They not only scored goals but provided the assists which botched Frankfurt.
In the 17th minute Muller set up Leon Goretzka for the opener. Muller then made it 2-0 in the 41st minute. Robert Lewandowski had made it 3-0, but a defensive lapse witnessed Martin Hinteregger netted twice in quick succession from corners to make it 3-2 and spice things.
There's just no stopping Bayern Munich right now 🤜🤛 pic.twitter.com/6MYiwIEhtc
— Goal (@goal) May 23, 2020
Well, it has been one of those evenings where you cannot stop a charged-up Bayern Munich. Davies extended the lead in the 61st minute and in the 74th minute Hinteregger scored an own goal – unique hat-trick for sure!
Hinteregger with a hattrick against Bayern Munich pic.twitter.com/owNr2mYEsw
— Troll F̶o̶o̶t̶b̶a̶l̶l̶ Bundesliga (@TrollFootball) May 23, 2020
The final scoreline was 5-2 – Bayern means business ahead of the Der Klassiker!