Bundesliga: Bayern Munich beats Schalke to go into winter break in top spot

The Bavarians, who fielded a starting line-up consisting entirely of World Cup-bound players, scored once in either half with Serge Gnabry and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting, and with Germany international Jamal Musiala delivering both assists.

Schalke’s German defender Henning Matriciani (L) and Schalke’s German midfielder Sidi Sane (R) vie for the ball with Bayern Munich’s Cameroonian forward Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting.

Schalke’s German defender Henning Matriciani (L) and Schalke’s German midfielder Sidi Sane (R) vie for the ball with Bayern Munich’s Cameroonian forward Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting. | Photo Credit: UWE KRAFT

The Bavarians, who fielded a starting line-up consisting entirely of World Cup-bound players, scored once in either half with Serge Gnabry and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting, and with Germany international Jamal Musiala delivering both assists.

Champion Bayern Munich eased past Schalke 04 2-0 on Saturday to make sure of top spot going into the World Cup break as it hunts a record-extending 11th straight Bundesliga crown.

The Bavarians, who fielded a starting line-up consisting entirely of World Cup-bound players, scored once in either half with Serge Gnabry and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting, and with Germany international Jamal Musiala delivering both assists.

Bayern’s sixth consecutive league win -- and 10th across all competitions -- lifted it to 34 points, six ahead of second-placed RB Leipzig, 2-1 winner at Werder Bremen. Freiburg and Union Berlin, both on 27, face each other on Sunday.

Bayern had the upper hand from the start but it was not until Musiala, who at 19 is the youngest Bayern player to reach 100 league matches, combined well with Germany team mate Serge Ganbry for the lead in the 38th minute.

“Jamal has played an outstanding first half of the season and will hopefully play even better at the World Cup and the second half of the season,” coach Julian Naglesmann said of his attacking midfielder.

“He listens well and he wants to develop. He just has a lot of talent. He also has improved defensively,” he said.

“He has extremely lively feet, like snake legs - the rebounds always seem to land in front of his feet.”

The teenager, who also has nine league goals, then delivered his sixth assist of the season for Cameroon forward Choupo-Moting, who had earlier come close with a glancing header, to tap in seven minutes after the restart and leave Schalke in last place following its eighth loss in the last nine matches.

The 33-year-old forward is himself in fine form going into the World Cup with 11 goals in all competitions, including six in the league.

The Bundesliga goes into a prolonged break following this weekend’s matches due to the start of the World Cup in Qatar next weekend and will resume on Jan. 20.

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