Champion frustrated despite Zuber own goal

Bayern Munich was frustrated by unbeaten Hoffenheim on Saturday as it was held to a 1-1 Bundesliga draw at the Allianz Arena.

arjen robben - cropped

Bayern Munich winger Arjen Robben.

Bayern Munich was frustrated by unbeaten Hoffenheim on Saturday as it was held to a 1-1 Bundesliga draw at the Allianz Arena.

The champion, which has won all but one of its home matches this season, was unable to make the most of its territorial dominance after Steven Zuber's own goal had levelled matters following a blistering opener from Kerem Demirbay.

Hoffenheim came into the match as one of three sides yet to taste defeat this term, along with Bayern and RB Leipzig, and it underlined its impressive form with a stunning breakaway goal from Demirbay early on.

The home fans were agitated with their side's rather insipid performance, but it did find a breakthrough before half-time, when Zuber turned into his own net after Arjen Robben and Douglas Costa combined.

Carlo Ancelotti's side continued to control possession but looked short on energy and ideas in the attacking third, as it hard-fought Champions League win over PSV in midweek appeared to be taking its toll.

Substitute Thomas Muller headed straight at Oliver Baumann from close range and Mats Hummels rattled a post late on, but Hoffenheim deservedly held firm to take a share of the spoils and stay within four points of the champions heading into the international break.

Bayern remains top after extending their own unbeaten league run to 20 matches, but RB Leipzig can join them on 24 points if they beat Mainz on Sunday.

The host, who was sporting one-off kits made of recycled plastic aimed at raising awareness of oceanic pollution, saw its early control undone by a moment of brilliance that gave Hoffenheim the lead.

After Jerome Boateng had failed to intercept a pass, Nadiem Amiri was allowed time and space down the Bayern right before rolling the ball into the path of Demirbay on the edge of the area, who swept a sublime left-footed strike past the stationary Manuel Neuer and into the top corner.

Hoffenheim had only conceded 10 league goals before this game and was keeping Bayern comfortably at arm's length, but a horror moment for Zuber handed the hosts an equaliser.

Robben's fine run and pass sent Costa free inside the penalty area, and as he crossed low to the far post towards Robert Lewandowski, a sliding Zuber contrived to turn the ball through the legs of Baumann and into the net.

The goal — which ensured Bayern have scored in 36 consecutive home matches, a record since their move to the Allianz Arena — settled some anxiety among the home fans, but Hoffenheim continued to frustrate their attacking efforts while looking dangerous on the counter-attack themselves.

A crucial challenge from Zuber denied Thiago a tap-in at the far post after Lewandowski's flick, but Ancelotti introduced Muller from the bench with 22 minutes to play in an effort to inject some new impetus into the attack.

Captain Sebastian Rudy made a timely challenge to halt Rafinha's run at the end of a good Bayern passing move and Hummels struck the base of the post from the edge of the area, before Muller blasted wide via the edge of the woodwork when picked out in clear space near the penalty spot by Kingsley Coman, but there was to be no winner at the end of a disappointing display.

 

Key Opta stats:

- Bayern is unbeaten in its last 20 league matches (W15, D5), Hoffenheim in its last 10 (W5, D5). Both of these runs are the best active streaks in the division.
- Hoffenheim ran 123.2 kilometres, a league-high in 2016-17 for a Bundesliga team.
- Bayern scored in its 36th match at home in all competition, setting up a new record in Allianz Arena.
- Thomas Muller missed the only big chance Bayern had in this match and is without a Bundesliga goal for 682 minutes now.
- David Alaba appeared in his 234th competitive game for Bayern Munich, drawing level with Stefan Effenberg.

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