DFB Pokal: Gnabry, Muller complete late turnaround as Bayern sneaks past Bochum

Bayern Munich scored twice in the last 10 minutes to record a nervy come-from-behind win against second-tier side Bochum in the DFB Pokal.

Published : Oct 30, 2019 09:28 IST

Bayern Munich players celebrate Thomas Muller's 88th minute winner against Bochum in the DFB-Pokal on Tuesday.
Bayern Munich players celebrate Thomas Muller's 88th minute winner against Bochum in the DFB-Pokal on Tuesday.

Bayern Munich players celebrate Thomas Muller's 88th minute winner against Bochum in the DFB-Pokal on Tuesday.

Thomas Muller and Serge Gnabry spared Bayern Munich's blushes by scoring late goals to scrape a 2-1 DFB-Pokal second-round win at Bochum, which finished Tuesday's game with 10 men.

Alphonso Davies' first-half own goal gave Bochum a surprise lead and the second-tier side looked on the brink of a famous upset with less than 10 minutes remaining. But Gnabry levelled proceedings for the 19-time champion in the 83rd minute, a smart finish at the back post setting up a grandstand finale at Vonovia Ruhrstadion.

One-way traffic followed and after Armel Bella-Kotchap was given a red card for bringing down Muller, the Bayern star settled the contest by turning in Kingsley Coman's brilliant first-time cross for a dramatic 89th-minute winner.

Bochum gave a good account of itself in the opening period and took the lead thanks to Davies' own goal, Danny Blum's cross from the left turned in by the makeshift left-back.

Niko Kovac introduced Robert Lewandowski at the break, with Philippe Coutinho and Muller soon following as Bayern sought an equaliser. Blum continued to impress, though, and nearly caught Manuel Neuer out with an effort from inside his own half as Bochum sought to wrap up a first home win since May.

Bayern was increasingly desperate as the match went on and finally levelled when Gnabry was on hand to score from close range after Joshua Kimmich's cross. The goal immediately changed the complexion of the match, Bochum retreating and inviting wave after wave of pressure.

Even a rare moment when Bayern did not have the ball caused a problem, as defender Bella-Kotchap dallied on the ball, lost his footing and brought down Muller as last man to stop him running through on goal. A red card was the only option for referee Robert Schroder and the 88th-minute dismissal was quickly followed by the winner, Coman's outstanding ball across the face of goal capitalised on by Muller as the reigning champions survived a major scare.

What does it mean? Bochum still boosted

Bayern's eighth successive DFB-Pokal victory booked its  place in the third round, but Bochum will take plenty of heart from a performance that should raise spirits for a side only off the bottom of the 2.Bundesliga on goal difference.

Blum catches the eye

Bochum may have lost in the end, but Blum did his best to give his side a chance of progression. The 28-year-old not only created the goal but was a constant threat down the left, his creativity and guile a highlight of the host's gallant display.

Tolisso's off night

Corentin Tolisso was not at his best in a sub-par Bayern performance. He had plenty of company in that regard, but Kovac had seen enough after 65 minutes and replaced the World Cup winner with Muller.

What's next?

Bayern returns to Bundesliga action against Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday, while Bochum will look to climb the 2.Bundesliga table when it hosts Nurnberg on Monday.

- Bayern's attitude against Bochum was all wrong, says  Kovac -

Bayern Munich boss Niko Kovac questioned his side's attitude after the side's 2-1 win over Bochum. Kovac's men needed an 83rd-minute equaliser from Serge Gnabry to finally take control of the match and, after Armel Bella-Kotchap was sent off, Thomas Muller scored a late winner.

"It was all wrong for 60, 70 minutes," an unhappy Kovac said. "The fact that we played so many bad passes, in my opinion, has something to do with the attitude ... it has nothing to do with tactics. It has to do with the attitude.

"There were too many players who played bad passes," he added.

The Bayern boss made three changes to the side that beat Union Berlin 2-1 in the Bundesliga on Saturday, placing Robert Lewandowski, Philippe Coutinho and Muller on the bench. But he had to call on all three in a desperate bid to avoid embarrassment in the second half, with Lewandowski coming on at the start of the second half for the DFB-Pokal holders.

Kovac felt it was his other two substitutes that changed the match, though. "After Philippe Coutinho and Thomas Muller came on, things improved. And in the end we got that little bit of luck against Bochum, who really played so well," he said.

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