Bayern win from behind
Bayern Munich battled from a goal down to beat Mainz 4-1 and move back to the top of the Bundesliga standings.
Last Updated: 19/10/13 5:06pm
Bayern Munich battled from a goal down to beat Mainz 4-1 on Saturday and move back to the top of the Bundesliga standings.
Shawn Parker grabbed Mainz's one and only serious chance of the game, just before half-time, but the Bavarians responded in the second half with Arjen Robben and Thomas Muller turning the game on its head in the space of two minutes.
Mario Mandzukic added a third before Muller's second - this time from the penalty spot - completed the rout to lift the champions back to the summit after they had been displaced on Friday night when Bayer Leverkusen won 2-1 at Hoffenheim.
A few seasons ago, Mainz coach Thomas Tuchel joked that he would park the team bus in front of his goal to keep Bayern out.
They did not do that, and Tuchel did not repeat the threat this year, although his side went closer to putting it into practice as they packed men behind the ball, frustrating Bayern into doing precious little with their near-80 per cent possession.
Try as they might, Bayern lacked the creativity to find a way through the massed ranks, and then they lost defender Dante to injury for good measure.
Before home coach Pep Guardiola could reorganise his defence, Mainz took advantage with a long ball sending Parker through, Jerome Boateng's flailing leg failing to intercept the pass.
Disregarding the general astonishment in the Allianz Arena that a Mainz player was bearing down on goal, Parker kept his cool to dribble round Manuel Neuer and score a minute before the break.
Guardiola's answer was to send Mario Gotze on for Rafinha for the start of the second period, practically abandoning defence. With their possession and territorial domination, it was a calculated risk. And it worked.
Gotze's first notable involvement was to thread the ball through to Robben, who just had to shift it onto his favoured left foot and pick his spot in the far corner of Christian Wetklo's goal.
Two minutes later, Bayern perfected their ping-passing with Mandzukic and Robben setting up Muller to score from eight yards.
Gotze teed up Mandzukic for Bayern's third with a low cross from the right to the unmarked Croatian, who slotted the ball in from near the penalty spot to seal Bayern's victory.
There was time for a fourth when Bastian Schweinsteiger went to ground easily inside the area, earning the penalty he was looking for.
After some discussion, Muller placed the ball on the spot - upsetting Robben in the process - and swept it past Wetklo.