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13th of June 2020

One-win gap to title after beating Gladbach (2-1)

One-win gap to title after beating Gladbach (2-1)

FC Bayern beat Borussia Mönchengladbach 2-1 on Saturday evening. Their tenth league victory in a row means Bayern need only one more win to wrap up the championship title. Joshua Zirkzee put the Bavarians ahead midway through an evenly-balanced first half, but Benjamin Pavard put through his own goal before half-time. Bayern pushed for a winner after the hour mark, Leon Goretzka rewarding them in the closing stages.

The Bavarians started with Manuel Neuer in goal and Benjamin Pavard, Jérôme Boateng, David Alaba and Lucas Hernández in a back four. Joshua Kimmich and Michaël Cuisance featured in a twin holding role behind Serge Gnabry, Leon Goretzka and Ivan Perišić, with Joshua Zirkzee as an orthodox centre-forward. Alphonso Davies and Kingsley Coman took over from Hernández and Cuisance on the hour, Kwasi Wriedt and Javi Martínez coming on for Zirkzee and Perišić in the closing stages.

The first half was an evenly-matched affair. The two sides felt each other out before the game sprang to life after a quarter-hour, and the visitors had the ball in the back of the net, but Jonas Hofmann's goal was ruled out for offside after VAR intervention. Gnabry warmed the gloves of keeper Yann Sommer, who soon made a fine save to deny Hernández. Breel Embolo drew a save from Neuer and put the rebound wide at the other end, but Zirkzee handed Bayern the lead when he expertly dispatched a poor clearance from Sommer, curling into the open net from 20 yards.

The Rhineland outfit enjoyed a spell in command now and levelled the scores when Pavard unluckily put through his own goal as he tried to beat Hofmann to a low ball. Cuisance miscued a header before Sommer denied Perišić.

Leon's late winner
Bayern had Neuer to thank for keeping the scores level after the restart, the netminder clearing a Rami Bensebaini cross before denying Patrick Herrmann. The champions upped the pressure now, Pavard seeing his header go over the bar, Sommer saving a deflected Gnabry effort.

A Boateng pass only just evaded Coman, Bayern camping out in their opponents' half now. Pavard atoned for his own-goal with five minutes to go, beating Gladbach's Oscar Wendt to a loose ball, his low cross inviting Goretzka to seal a late winner and three crucial points in the race for the title.

The result means Bayern have 73 points from 31 matches, seven clear of Dortmund. The Bavarians will be back in action on Tuesday, when they travel to face Werder Bremen in the Bundesliga.

- Match stats:

FC Bayern: Neuer - Pavard, Boateng, Alaba, Hernández (Davies 62) - Kimmich, Goretzka - Gnabry, Cuisance (Coman 62), Perišić (Martínez 88) - Zirkzee (Wriedt 77)

Borussia Mönchengladbach: Sommer - Lainer, Ginter, Elvedi (Jantschke 46), Bensebaini - Kramer, Hofmann, Neuhaus - Herrmann (Wendt 70), Stindl, Thuram (Embolo 10, Bénes 83)

Referee: Felix Zwayer (Berlin)

Goals: 1-0 Zirkzee (26), 1-1 Pavard (37, og), 2-1 Goretzka (86)

Yellow cards: / Bensebaini, Lainer

- Match report by (Greg Salmen)

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