German champions Bayern Munich trumped Hoffenheim 4-0 in
their Bundesliga encounter on Saturday without coach Julian Nagelsmann in the
dugout. Nagelsmann sent instructions to the team remotely from isolation after
testing positive for the coronavirus. On the other hand, Munich’s rivals Borussia
Dortmund made do without injured striker Erling Haaland to overcome Arminia
Serge Gnabry and Robert Lewandowski were on the scoresheet
as Bayern stayed a point clear of Dortmund at the top of the Bundesliga table
in what would have been a routine win if not for Nagelsmann’s absence.
The coach has been directing Bayern remotely since he tested
positive ahead of a Champions League away game against Benfica on Wednesday
which Bayern won 4-0. Assistant Dino Toppmöller deputises on the touchline with
Nagelsmann closely involved with the
Bayern attacked Hoffenheim from the word go with Lewandowski
scuffing a shot wide in the second minute when one-on-one with the goalkeeper,
before Gnabry had a goal disallowed over a prior foul by Jamal Musiala.
Gnabry opened the score for Bayern, taking advantage of
Hoffenheim’s narrow defensive formation to overlap on the right side of the
penalty area in the 16th minute of the game. Lewandowski added the
second on the half-hour mark on a counterattack. Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting and
Kingsley Coman were the other scorers for Bayern.
Dortmund, who sit second in the league table, were playing
without star striker Erling Haaland. A hip muscle injury for Haaland could rule
out the Norwegian for weeks and make Dortmund’s bid to dethrone Bayern even
harder. Haaland’s teammates appeared not to be affected as they showed off
their skills in a 3-1 win over Bielefeld.
Emre Can put Dortmund ahead from the penalty spot after a
clumsy tackle, before center back Mats Hummels made a statement with a volley
from the edge of the area to make it 2-0. England midfielder Jude Bellingham
had his moment in the spotlight in the 72nd minute, beating three
Bielefeld players on his way to scoring a fine solo goal.
(With AP inputs)