Historically, Carlo Ancelotti’s Bayern Munich and Thomas Tuchel’s Borussia Dortmund hit their stride at this part of the season. So it’s no surprise that the main protagonists of Der Klassiker took care of business. Relegation-bound Hamburger SV, under the direction of Markus Gisdol, was routed 8-0 by the Bavarians at Allianz Arena. Robert Lewandowski (24′, 42′, 54′) had a hat trick and Kingsley Coman (65′, 69′) had a brace. Other goalscorers include Arturo Vidal (17′), David Alaba (56′) and Arjen Robben (87′).
“It was a perfect day, a perfect match,” said Ancelotti. “We played well, with good attitude. Before the match I told my players to turn in a good display on the occasion of my milestone. I didn’t expect it to work so well, we did a very good job. I’m very happy, and for the next match I wish for the same attitude and the same spirit.”
It was a match of milestones for Bayern Munich as Ancelotti coached his 1000th competitive match with an amazing 59-percent win ratio. Superstar netminder Manuel Neuer received the ‘World’s Best Goalkeeper 2016’ award by the IFFHS (International Federation of Football History and Statistics) on the same night he earned his 100th clean sheet for the club while Robben notched goal number 125 for Die Roten equaling Claudio Pizarro.
“It was really fun,” said Thomas Muller. “At some point it took care of itself. If you win 8-0 in nice weather conditions and an outstanding atmosphere at the Arena, you can be very pleased as a club, as a team, as a fan.”
Meanwhile, at the Schwarzwald-Stadion, Dortmund dismissed Christian Striech’s SC Freiburg 3-0. Sokratis Papastathopoulos opened up the scoring in the 13th minute and in the second half, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang delivered the goods with a brace in the 55th and 70th minutes. The Gabon international scored his 103rd career goal for the black and yellow leveling Lewandowski’s tally and coincidently both strikers are joint-top scoring leaders in Bundesliga with 19.
The shutout victory was also the club’s 250th Bundesliga road win. Thus far BVB is cemented as the third-best club in the standings, 13 points behind leaders Bayern and eight points from second place RB Leipzig. An overall solid match for Thomas Tuchel’s pupils which gave them a second straight win in Germany’s top flight and perhaps momentum going forward.
“We’re very happy with the performance today,” said Tuchel. “The players deserve a big, big compliment; they played extraordinarily well. The team delivered an outstanding display in all areas, showed great alertness and had the required spirit. Going into this one we were well aware of the difficulty awaiting us in Freiburg, which makes us all the more delighted that we managed to win. It gives us a very good feeling. It was a great step forward. A big compliment to my team!
“We carried out our moves smoothly and we had the sharpness, tenacity and seriousness that was required to keep Freiburg at bay and get the three points. Tactically speaking, Freiburg are a top team. Their style of play is very difficult to defend against. It’s important and only right that we enjoy this on the way home, that we’re aware of how well we performed here. And that we recognise what made this performance so strong.
“Apart from the match in Darmstadt, we’ve looked very solid recently and put in good performances. I believe we’re capable of continuing in this vein. It’s brilliant to have won, deservedly, while keeping a clean sheet at the same time, to have managed to give away very little. It was a great performance. And all these little things give us a boost.”
A quick turnaround is in order for both sides. Dortmund are away to Sportfreunde Lotte of the 3.Liga in the DFB-Pokal quarterfinals and come in heavy favorites due to their respective places in the overall German football pyramid. Kickoff is scheduled for Tuesday at 11:45 a.m. PT/2:45 p.m. ET. As for Bayern, a tougher test comes on Wednesday against Markus Weinzierl’s Schalke 04 in their cup quarterfinal. Kickoff for that contest is also scheduled for 11:45 a.m. PT/2:45 p.m. ET.
*All statistics provided by Opta Sports