Bayern Munich crushed Dutch side PSV Eindhoven 4-1 in Champions League Group D on Wednesday to bounce back after three games without a win in all competitions and take a big step towards the last 16.
What had started as a walk in the park with Bayern riding roughshod over the Dutch with goals from Thomas Mueller and Joshua Kimmich turned into a nervous affair after PSV pulled a goal back through Luciano Narsingh before halftime.
The German champions, however, second in the group on six points behind leaders Atletico Madrid who have nine, kept their cool and Robert Lewandowski headed in the third goal on the hour.
Arjen Robben made sure of the three points and ended Bayern’s run of three matches without a win, converting an 84th-minute header against his former team to stretch his side’s Champions League record to 14 successive home wins. Eindhoven are on one point, along with Russia’s Rostov.
“We played very good from the start. We had high intensity, it was perfect,” Bayern coach Carlo Ancelotti told reporters.
“We had some problems towards the end of the first half and early in the second half. Sometimes I need to tell players what goes wrong and they are smart and very professional.”
The hosts made their intentions clear early on, after talk of a mini-crisis surfaced following two draws in the league and defeat by Atletico, with Mueller firing narrowly wide in the third minute.
He did it better in the 13th, however, slotting home on the rebound.
The hosts, with captain Philipp Lahm making his 100th Champions League appearance for the club, hit the woodwork through Robben as they dominated the first half with Eindhoven’s defence dazed.
Phillip Cocu’s men, unbeaten in their previous 21 away games in all competitions, struggled to get past the halfway line.
Kimmich doubled Bayern’s lead in the 21st with a close-range header to take his goal tally to three in three Champions League games this season.
The Dutch side struck against the run of play with their first shot on goal as Narsingh’s effort four minutes before halftime went in off the post.
The improving Dutch came closer to an equaliser with Gaston Pereiro but just as PSV were gaining momentum Lewandowski nodded in on the hour to settle the home team’s nerves.
Robben headed in the fourth goal from an outstanding Thiago Alcantara cross to complete Bayern’s victory.
“We did not play badly. We had the chances to get a good result,” Cocu said.
“We were under pressure early on but we came back. Early in the second half we did it well but now it is very difficult for us.”