The champions brushed off any fears of a hangover from their midweek European heroics, mercilessly exploiting a cavernous gulf in class between themselves and sorry MSV Duisburg to win Saturday’s one-sided encounter on cruise control and return to the top of the league.
Another 66,000 capacity crowd at the Allianz Arena witnessed a first half of relentless Bayern pressure, rewarded with goals from Michael Ballack and a moment of cunning from ZÃ© Roberto.
In truth, the shell-shocked visitors had keeper Georg Koch and a healthy portion of good fortune to thank for not conceding a hatful, but the veteran shot-stopper was powerless to prevent Roque Santa Cruz increasing the margin on the hour.
Sub Claudio Pizarro opened his account for the season with the last kick of the match as Bayern wrapped up a supremely comfortable victory, which combined with Bremen’s goalless draw in Hanover, sees the Reds leapfrog Werder and recover the lead in the Bundesliga standings.
Fortress Allianz Arena
The result also means the champions maintain their flawless domestic record at the Allianz Arena, as they have yet to drop a point or concede a league goal at home this term.
Felix Magath made two changes to the side which started Tuesday evening’s feast of football against Juventus.
Bastian Schweinsteiger replaced Bixente Lizarazu during the Champions League encounter and continued in the left-back role, while experienced campaigner Jens Jeremies deputised for suspended Martin Demichelis in a like-for-like swap.
After a cagey opening ten minutes, Bayern took the match by the scruff of the neck and never let go, pummelling the promoted side into submission in a match which resembled men against boys at times.
Shots rain in on Koch
The chances arrived with the regularity of a metronome: ZÃ© flashed a cross-cum-shot across the face, defender Uwe MÃ¶hrle deflected Roy Makaay’s effort over the bar, and ZÃ© drove wide as he appeared to be fouled in the box by long-serving Carsten Wolters.
Santa Cruz headed Jeremies’ curling cross too high, Koch held Ballack’s shot, Makaay hit the top of the bar with an angled drive, and the MSV keeper parried Schweinsteiger’s drilled effort, all before the mid-point of the half.
The lead was long overdue and finally arrived on 27 minutes, Ballack netting his fourth of the campaign with a powerful header from Santa Cruz’ inch-perfect cross.
Lame Zebras pose little threat
The first opening of the match had actually fallen to the Zebras when Peter van Houdt scuffed his shot, and former Red Alex Bugera loosed off MSV’s second chance with a burst and shot on 32 minutes.
It was a temporary interruption to the one-way traffic as ZÃ© doubled the lead on 33 minutes, inadvertently declining the easy option of blasting home from close range in favour of a cheeky backheel through a forest of legs from the ensuing scramble.
The Reds took a breather for a spell, and Ballack came off at half-time as a precaution after collecting a mild groin strain, Ali Karimi taking his place.
Reds turn superiority into goals
The Iran star was involved in the build-up for Bayern’s third, flipping a loose ball across the box to ZÃ© out on the left. The Brazilian dinked a delightful chip into the middle where the MSV defence parted like the proverbial Red Sea for Santa Cruz to cushion a header over the line.
Mehmet Scholl came on for ZÃ© and Claudio Pizarro replaced Santa Cruz as the double winners eased back in the final quarter of the game.
Unlucky Makaay passed the 800 minute mark without a goal as Koch twice denied the Dutch ace, but the result was never in doubt as the Bavarians more than comfortably wrapped up the points, Pizarro giving the scoreline a realistic look with a near-post flick from Scholl’s cross in the last move of a lopsided affair.
Bayern Munich – MSV Duisburg 4-0 (H-T: 2-0)
Bayern Munich: Kahn – Sagnol, Lucio, Ismael, Schweinsteiger – Jeremies – Deisler, Ballack (Karimi 46), ZÃ© Roberto (Scholl 60) – Makaay, Santa Cruz (Pizarro 69)
Substitutes: Dreher, Guerrero, Ottl
MSV Duisburg: Koch – Wolters, MÃ¶hrle, Biliskov, Meyer Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Baelum, Tjikuzu, Bugera, Grlic (Anfang 77) Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Kurth (Rietpietsch 66), van Houdt (Ahanfouf 66)
Referee: Mr Rafati (Hanover)
Spectators: 66,000 (capacity)
Goals: 1-0 Ballack (27), 2-0 ZÃ© Roberto (33), 3-0 Santa Cruz (59), 4-0 Pizarro (90+1)
Yellow Cards: — / Grlic