Bayern Munich 1-2 Borussia Mönchengladbach: Player rating

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An impoverished Bayern Munich suffered its first loss since mid-November when Borussia Mönchengladbach began the return of the Bundesliga with a comeback win at a snowy Allianz Arena.

Bayern have had to deal with a number of positive cases of Covid-19 during the Christmas break, with Manuel Neuer, Kingsley Coman, Leroy Sane and Dayot Upamecano among the players forced to watch Friday’s clash from the comfort of their homes.

Although the starting eleven was quite different from what we have seen during Julian Nagelsmann this season, there was a lot of knowledge about the first goal scorer when Robert Lewandowski put his team in the lead.

The Polish striker collected Thomas Muller’s pass and turned brilliantly to get into the box before hitting a shot at the nearest post.

While Mönchengladbach looked weak in the attack with Breel Embolo particularly isolated, they still managed to find a draw before half an hour.

Bayern failed to clear their lines from a cross and Florian Neuhaus appeared to rattle an excellent volley under Sven Ulreich.

The visitors grabbed the lead and took the amazing lead shortly after their first goal when Stefan Lainer met Luca Netz’s corner to nod into the far corner.

An equalizer came almost at half-time when Lewandowski hit the post from a sharp angle before Muller saw his follow-up miraculously cleared from the line by Matthias Ginter.

The hosts met an impressive Yann Sommer in the Mönchengladbach goal, where the Swiss stopper denied Lewandowski, Musiala and Gnabry on several occasions.

Although the defeat does not change Bayern’s position at the top of the Bundesliga, it gives second-placed Borussia Dortmund the opportunity to close the gap to six points when they face Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday.

Mönchengladbach also finished a series of five matches without a win and has risen to 11th place in the table.

Kimmich was back in action / Sebastian Widmann / GettyImages

Sven Ulreich (GK) – 6/10 – Replaced the ill Neuer for his first league appearance of the season. Got a fluttering hand to Lainer’s nod but could not keep it out. Good save at the nearest post to deny Embolo.

Joshua Kimmich (RB) – 5/10 – Recovered from complications from the coronavirus and needed to come in as a right back. Weak flick away fell to Neuhaus to convert. Inches from an equalizer in the second half.

Benjamin Pavard (CB) – 5/10 – Vital recovery challenge to deny Mönchengladbach his third goal. Neither he nor Sule took control of Bayern’s back line and they fought as a result.

Niklas Sule (CB) – 5/10 – Made a pretty bad attempt to connect with the cross that led to Neuhaus’ equalizer. Very clumsy and unstable.

Marcel Sabitzer (LB) – 5/10 – A rare start for the Austrian, who was needed to fill in as a left-back. Obviously not his natural position and struggled all the time.

Musicala gets stuck in / Sebastian Widmann / GettyImages

Jamal Musiala (CM) – 7/10 – Ginter slammed his head as he tried to shoot. Forced a top save from Sommer with an attack that was a little too central. Did well defensively and made a number of interceptions.

Marc Roca (CM) – 4/10 – The passes were really sloppy in the first half and completed only 78% of the balls he tried. Will not get too many opportunities when Bayern are at full strength and will probably not be seen when the injury and Covid-19 situation improves.

Thomas Muller (AM) – 6/10 – Took an assist to the first goal, though it was more about Lewandowski’s turn than Muller’s pass. Unlucky to see a targeted strike cleared away by Ginter.

Lewandowski made a brilliant premiere / Sebastian Widmann / GettyImages

Serge Gnabry (RW) – 5/10 – Found some space early and had a low drive saved by Sommer. Not his usual dangerous self and wandered offside a little too often.

Robert Lewandowski (ST) – 7/10 – Got an early prepared opportunity blocked by Sommer. Made no mistakes a few moments later, produced a wonderful turn to get behind Mönchengladbach’s defense and hit beyond the goalkeeper. Cut in the post shortly after Bayern went behind and later saw a lobbed effort come back from the crossbar. Would have had a hat trick another day.

Malik Tillman (LW) – 5/10 – Entered the starting eleven for his first ever start for Bayern. Tough situation to end up in and even if the 19-year-old could not influence that much, he will be all the better for the experience.

Lucas Copado (ST) – 5/10

Paul Wanner (AM) – 5/10

For more from Jude Summerfield, follow him on Twitter!

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