Bayern Munich signing Erling Haaland "doesn't make any sense" for sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic because they have Robert Lewandowski.

Haaland is believed to be available for €75million due to a clause in his Borussia Dortmund contract and is set leave in one of the upcoming off-season's major transfers. 

The Norway international has scored 82 goals and supplied 19 assists in 86 appearances in all competitions for Dortmund since making his debut on January 18, 2020. He has averaged 1.1 goals per 90 minutes, a record that is only bettered by Bayern striker Lewandowski (1.2) among players in the top five European leagues.

Haaland has been touted as a potential replacement for Lewandowski, who Bayern were said to be open to offers for with his contract expiring at the end of next season. 

However, Lewandowski leaving the Allianz Arena at the end of the campaign has been ruled out by Salihamidzic, who therefore sees no reason to pursue Haaland. 

"It doesn't make any sense," Salihamidzic said when asked on Sky90 about Bayern moving for Haaland. 

"We have the best striker in the world. We have Lewandowski." 

Asked if there was any player Bayern would break the bank for, Salihamidzic replied: "That's up to the supervisory board. But we don't want to put the club at risk. That will continue to be our philosophy in the future. 

"Of course, after the Champions League win it would've been great to keep all the players – like [Philippe] Coutinho and [Ivan] Perisic – but we can't ruin the club financially. We can't do squad planning like that. 

"We have a philosophy at the club. We have 14 top players in the squad and a number of top talents we want to develop. We don't have the money for 20 top players like in England." 

One player who could be heading to Munich for next season is Ajax midfielder Ryan Gravenberch, though Bayern are yet to agree to reported demands of a €30million fee. 

"He is a good player. We're in talks, I can say that much," Salihamidzic revealed. 

"With a transfer like this, a lot has to go right. I can't say [how it is looking]. It's difficult, like all transfers." 

Salihamidzic is also expecting to see more from Leroy Sane, who has failed to score or assist in his past eight appearances in all competitions for Bayern. 

"He's an incredibly talented young man who has everything. He's super fast, he can dribble and has this mental strength. But he has to deliver now," he said. 

"When he's showing good body language, that's good, but if he doesn't, that's not good. I don't want to see this. I spoke to him about it. 

"He has potential, but I want to see that on the pitch. We spoke several times. The people in charge, the coach, the players, everyone expects him to explode on the pitch. It's hard to say why he's not performing as expected. He's listening well. I hope he'll do it." 

Bayern Munich boss Julian Nagelsmann says he is unsure why Leroy Sane has struggled for form this season, acknowledging that the winger has been far from his best in recent weeks.

However, Nagelsmann also hailed Sane's "incredible qualities' and backed him to improve, rejecting criticism of his frustrated reaction to being substituted in a 1-0 win over Augsburg.

Sane played 65 minutes of the Bundesliga leaders' hard-fought victory but managed just one shot and four touches in the visitors' penalty area before being replaced by Kingsley Coman.

A late penalty from Robert Lewandowski was enough to extend Bayern's unbeaten league run to seven games, but the former Manchester City winger's below-par display marked his fifth consecutive league game without a goal.

After the victory, the Bayern coach admitted he was perplexed by Sane's poor form but backed him to get back to his best and hailed the 26-year-old's "incredible" ability. 

"I like Leroy very much, as a person and as a player. Everyone knows that he has incredible qualities," Nagelsmann said.

"He is self-critical enough and knows himself that he hasn't recently played well. I don't know exactly why.

"He's had ups and downs throughout his career. I support him completely."

Sane has scored seven goals in 28 Bundesliga appearances this season, with only Lewandowski (32) and fellow winger Serge Gnabry (11) netting more often for the perennial champions. 

However, the latest of Sane's league goals came in a 1-0 win over Eintracht Frankfurt in mid-February, and the 26-year-old cut a frustrated figure when replaced against Augsburg, appearing to shake Nagelsmann's hand half-heartedly before making his way to the bench.

Nagelsmann, however, refused to criticise Sane for his reaction, and was keen to move swiftly on from the incident.

"I'm not angry, we don't have to make a headline out of it," Nagelsmann added.

Bayern are back in Champions League action on Tuesday as they attempt to recover from a 1-0 first-leg loss to Villareal when they welcome Unai Emery's team to Bavaria.

Sane has been in much better form on the European stage, recording six goals and six assists in the competition this season. Since Opta records began in 2003-04, those 12 goal contributions are the joint-most managed by a German player in one Champions League campaign, along with Mario Gomez in 2011-12 (12 goals, also playing for Bayern).

Robert Lewandowski scored a record-breaking hat-trick as Bayern Munich thrashed Salzburg 7-1 to advance to the Champions League quarter-finals on Tuesday. 

After struggling in their 1-1 draw in the first leg three weeks ago, Lewandowski hit the ground running and had a treble by the 23rd minute. That made it the earliest hat-trick in Champions League history. 

It crushed Salzburg after a bright start and Serge Gnabry was on target as Bayern registered four first-half goals in a Champions League knockout game for the fourth time – as many as all other clubs combined. 

Substitute Maurits Kjaergaard pulled one back for Salzburg between a double from Thomas Muller, with Leroy Sane having the final say in a one-sided encounter.

Lewandowski buried a penalty after his excellent turn drew a foul from Maximilian Wober, who then saw a free-kick he gave away following a tackle on the Pole upgraded to a spot-kick following a VAR review. It resulted in another cool finish into the bottom-left corner from the striker. 

The hat-trick was completed when Lewandowski blocked Salzburg goalkeeper Philipp Kohn's clearance and bundled the ball home with his thigh after it came back off the post. 

The onslaught continued as Mohamed Camara was caught in possession on the edge of Salzburg's box by Kingsley Coman and Gnabry drilled home from the Frenchman's pass. 

Muller rifled a fine finish into the bottom-right corner as Bayern continued to dominate after the restart, but Kjaergaard pulled one back for Salzburg nine minutes after replacing Chukwubuike Adamu. 

Sane set up Muller for his second of the game in the 83rd minute and was on target himself two minutes later, steering Lewandowski's flick home at the near post to complete a resounding victory.


What does it mean? Lewandowski back on song in Europe 

After failing to register a single effort on goal in Bayern's two previous Champions League games – the first time that has happened in his career – Lewandowski hit the ground running at the Allianz Arena. 

He took little time to score his fifth hat-trick in the competition, a tally that is only bettered by Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi (both eight). 

Neuer returns 

Manuel Neuer made his 104th Champions League appearance for Bayern – surpassing Oliver Kahn as the Bayern goalkeeper with the most appearances in the competition. He was unable to mark the occasion with a clean sheet, though. 

Woeful Wober 

Salzburg were always going to be up against it in Munich, but Wober's clumsy challenges all but ended their hopes of progressing before the midway point of the first half had been reached. 

What's next? 

Bayern have a tricky trip to top-four chasing Hoffenheim in the Bundesliga on Saturday, while Salzburg are up against Sturm Graz on Sunday. 

Julian Nagelsmann is aiming to have Manuel Neuer back in his Bayern Munich team for Tuesday's Champions League last-16 second leg against Salzburg.

Neuer has missed more than a month with a knee injury, last playing against RB Leipzig on February 5.

Since then, Bayern have kept only one clean sheet in five matches, conceding four at Bochum in the first match without their captain.

Stand-in Sven Ulreich has still been steady – saving only 61.1 per cent of shots on target faced but preventing 0.4 goals and not committing any errors leading to goals – yet Nagelsmann is keen to have Neuer available.

"If there is no reaction in his knee overnight, he will be able to play," Nagelsmann told a pre-match news conference.

"We are all very happy about that – even if Ulle [Ulreich] has done well."

If the identity of his goalkeeper is dependent on medical advice, Nagelsmann has trickier calls to make in attack, where Leroy Sane's past two appearances have come from the bench.

Sane has 13 goals and 12 assists in 34 games this season, although 12 of his goals have come in his 27 starts – and he has made every Champions League XI so far.

"He's a player I don't like to leave out because he has the quality that has already won us games," Nagelsmann said of Sane.

"I haven't decided yet what the first XI will look like. Of course, he is a candidate.

"I hope he's in the best shape if he plays from the start. He's an incredible player who can't really be defended when he plays to the limit. He has my confidence, even if he doesn't start."

Nagelsmann accepted Bayern can only have a "special season" if they continue their Champions League run beyond this tie, which is level at 1-1 ahead of the home leg.

And he will not allow his team to be complacent against Salzburg, who threatened an upset in Austria, where Kingsley Coman equalised in the 90th minute.

"Salzburg have been a good team for years – they have a very clear idea about how to win the ball," Nagelsmann added.

"It's never easy to defend that. It may not be the prettiest, but it is very dangerous.

"They have a lot of interesting individual players and have the quality to play football.

"They would also do well in the German Bundesliga because they have a lot of good players who are hungry and want to win something. They are a dangerous team who will demand everything from us."

Bayern Munich put pressure back on Borussia Dortmund as they battled to a 1-0 victory at Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday.

The leaders were kept at bay by Oliver Glasner's side until Leroy Sane struck with 19 minutes of normal time remaining.

The victory, a first against Glasner for Bayern boss Julian Nagelsmann in his Bundesliga coaching career at the sixth attempt, moved the champions nine points clear of Dortmund at the top of the table ahead of their clash with Augsburg on Sunday.

Frankfurt largely contained Bayern in a cagey first half, although Kevin Trapp had to make a strong double save to keep out Joshua Kimmich's volley and Kingsley Coman's follow-up.

Robert Lewandowski was denied following a good throughball from Serge Gnabry and Trapp sprung to keep out another effort from the striker two minutes later.

Just at it looked like Bayern were running out of ideas, Kimmich slid the ball through to Sane in the box, and the winger kept his composure to slot past Trapp.

Frankfurt mounted some late pressure, leading to a few scrambles in the Bayern box, but Sven Ulreich was mostly untroubled in goal.

Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting ignored a free Sane, shooting straight at Trapp when a cross seemed the better option, but Frankfurt could not punish the error.

Four more teams begin their Champions League knockout-stage campaigns on Wednesday when Inter host Liverpool and Bayern Munich travel to Salzburg for the first leg of their last-16 ties.

The clash between European heavyweights Inter and Liverpool at San Siro could potentially be a landmark one for Reds boss Jurgen Klopp, who is one short of becoming the eighth coach – and the first German – to reach 50 wins in the competition.

Salzburg's meeting with Bayern will be a special occasion regardless as the Austrian Bundesliga champions are competing at this stage of the competition for the first time ever.

Bayern are unbeaten in their last 21 away games in the Champions League since September 2017 – the longest-such run in European Cup history – and they beat Salzburg by a combined 9-3 scoreline in last term's group-stage meetings.

With the help of Opta, Stats Perform picks out some of the best of the numbers ahead of Wednesday's pair of last-16 ties.

Inter v Liverpool

Each of the four previous encounters between Inter and Liverpool have come in the knockout rounds of the European Cup and Champions League. Inter advanced over two legs in the 1964-65 semi-finals en route to being crowned the kings of Europe, while Liverpool emerged victorious at this very stage in 2007-08.

Liverpool have won their last two away games against Italian opposition in European competition – just one win fewer than they managed in their previous 14 such encounters – after beating Atalanta in 2020-21 and Milan earlier this season 

Inter have been eliminated from two of their three two-legged knockout ties against English opponents since the Champions League changed format in 2003-04, losing to Liverpool in 2007-08 and Manchester United in 2008-09, before eliminating Chelsea in 2009-10.

The Nerazzurri have won their last two Champions League home matches, which is one more than they managed in their previous nine between November 2018 and September 2021. However, not since between December 2009 and November 2010 – a run of seven victories – have they won three in a row in San Siro in the competition.

Mohamed Salah is in line to make his 50th Champions League appearance for Liverpool. The Egypt international has scored 32 goals in 49 games to date – only Cristiano Ronaldo (51 for Real Madrid) and Robert Lewandowski (36 for Bayern Munich) have ever netted more as of their 50th game for a single club.

Inter will hope Edin Dzeko can continue his good record against Liverpool, having netted in each of his past three meetings with them, scoring once for Manchester City in 2015 and twice for Roma in the semi-finals of this competition in 2017-18. 

Salzburg v Bayern Munich

Bayern are facing Austrian opposition in the knockout stages of a European competition for the fourth time. The German giants have advanced on each of the previous three occasions – against Rapid Vienna in the 1966-67 Cup Winners' Cup and Austria Vienna in successive European Cup campaigns in 1985-86 and 1986-87.

That does not bode well for Salzburg, who have won only one of their last six games against German teams in European competition, conceding 18 goals at an average of three per match. However, that solitary win did come in their most-recent home match – a 3-1 win over Wolfsburg in the group stage.

Julian Nagelsmann's side are one of only three teams with a 100 per cent record in the Champions League this term, along with Liverpool and Ajax. Only three sides prior to this campaign have ever won their first seven games of a Champions League campaign, with Bayern the most recent to do so three seasons ago.

Salzburg will be hoping to follow Atalanta, RB Leipzig (both in 2019-20) and Wolfsburg (2015-16) as only the fourth team to win their first game in the knockout stage of the Champions League.

Robert Lewandowski is set to make his 50th away appearance in UEFA's showpiece competition. The Bayern striker has scored 37 goals to date in those games, which is already the most of any player to have reached that landmark, three more than next-best Lionel Messi.

Lewandowski's 11 direct goal involvements in the group stage were the second-most of any player, behind Ajax's Sebastien Haller (12). Next on the list is team-mate Leroy Sane, who scored five and assisted four more in six appearances.

Alphonso Davies has become the latest Bayern Munich player to test positive for coronavirus.

Bayern revealed on Wednesday that Canada left-back Davies had contracted COVID-19

It comes a day after Leroy Sane and Dayot Upamecano tested positive as the Bundesliga leaders prepare to face Borussia Monchengladbach in their first game after the winter break on Friday.

Lucas Hernandez and Tanguy Nianzou also returned positive tests this week.

Manuel Neuer, Kingsley Coman, Corentin Tolisso and Omar Richards were also unable to report for training after they tested positive. 

Bayern's assistant coach Dino Toppmoller is another absent due to coronavirus.

The Bavarian giants won seven consecutive games prior to the break and hold a nine-point lead over Borussia Dortmund at the top of the Bundesliga.

Lucas Hernandez and Tanguy Nianzou have tested positive for COVID-19, Bayern Munich have confirmed.

The club said in a statement that the pair have entered isolation and are "both well".

They will miss Bayern's Bundesliga clash with Borussia Monchengladbach on Friday – the champions' first match after the mid-season break.

France international Hernandez has made 19 appearances across all competitions this season, while teenager Nianzou has featured in 13 games, although just four of those have been starts.

Bayern also revealed that Leroy Sane, Dayot Upamecano and Josip Stanisic returned inconclusive results.

Julian Nagelsmann's side resume Bundesliga action with a nine-point advantage over Borussia Dortmund at the top of the table.

Thomas Muller starred on a milestone appearance and Robert Lewandowski broke a long-standing Gerd Muller record as Bundesliga leaders Bayern Munich cruised to a 4-0 victory over Wolfsburg on Friday.

Muller marked his 400th top-flight outing for Bayern with the opening goal after seven minutes at the Allianz Arena, before the Germany international teed up Dayot Upamecano for a second after the interval.

Leroy Sane added a third for Julian Nagelsmann's side and Lewandowski was able to find a record 43rd league goal in 2021 to surpass Bayern legend's Gerd Muller's long-standing Bundesliga calendar-year scoring record as the hosts cruised to victory.
 
Leaders Bayern hold a nine-point advantage at the summit, with Dortmund – who play Hertha Berlin on Saturday – sat in second heading into the mid-season break.

Bayern were soon ahead when Muller poked home from close range after Koen Casteels had parried Serge Gnabry's strike, before Manuel Neuer thwarted Wout Weghorst at the other end.

Jamal Musiala almost doubled Bayern's lead but dragged wide, while Casteels denied Lewandowski's header from point-blank range.

Muller delicately chipped for Upamecano to head into the bottom-left corner after the interval, with Sane expertly curling in via the left post just two minutes later.

Lewandowski then had two opportunities to break Gerd Muller's benchmark, but wastefully prodded over with the first before an excellent Casteels save denied him from the second.

The Poland striker eventually managed his landmark finish when Musiala selflessly headed across goal for the Poland striker to volley in as Bayern eased to victory.


What does it mean? Bayern title favourites again heading into mid-season break

Bayern, who have not lost any of their last 25 home league matches against Wolfsburg, once again head into the mid-season break top of the Bundesliga – this time leading by at least six points, with Dortmund set to play their game in hand against Hertha Berlin on Saturday.

In the three points-per-win era, the Bavarians have won the title in 14 of the 15 seasons when they have been at the summit at the halfway point. By contrast, Wolfsburg have now lost seven consecutive competitive matches.

Gnabry the Great

Muller and Lewandowski seemingly steal the plaudits most weeks, but Gnabry's dominant performance should not go under the radar.

The Germany winger not only provided an assist but also laid on a team-leading three chances – along with full-back Alphonso Davies and Musiala – as he ensured a torrid game for Yannick Gerhardt at left wing-back.

Woeful Weghorst

Weghorst wasted a glorious opportunity to equalise immediately after Muller's opener and that set the tone for a frustrating performance from the striker.

The Netherlands international cut an isolated figure up top, winning just over a third of his 14 duels, while relinquishing possession a team-high 18 times.

What's next?

The Bundesliga now takes a break until 2022. Bayern return to action at home to Borussia Monchengladbach on January 7, while Wolfsburg visit Bochum two days later. 

Barcelona have been eliminated from the Champions League following a 3-0 defeat to Bayern Munich at the Allianz Arena.

Xavi's side drop into the Europa League and will not appear in the knockout stages of Europe's premier club competition for the first time since the 2003-04 season.

Already assured of top spot in Group E, first-half goals from Thomas Muller and Leroy Sane put Bayern well on the way to progressing with a 100 per cent record.

Jamal Musiala ensured that Julian Nagelsmann's side did just that when he sealed the victory just after the hour mark in another routine victory for the hosts in this fixture.

To avoid elimination, Barca needed to win or hope that Benfica failed to beat Dynamo Kiev elsewhere in the final round of group fixtures.

Jordi Alba tested Manuel Neuer from distance, while Ousmane Dembele swept a shot over from Memphis Depay's square ball.

But Barca fell behind in the 34th minute; Robert Lewandowski cleverly twisting and turning before crossing for Muller, whose looping header crossed the line before Ronald Araujo could volley clear.

Bayern doubled their lead just before the break with Sane's powerful 30-yard strike completely perplexing Marc-Andre ter Stegen.

Sane squandered a golden opportunity for his second goal shortly after the restart when somehow failing to turn the ball home from inside the six-yard box after Kingsley Coman cushioned Alphonso Davies' cross into his path.

Bayern's third goal did arrive in the 62nd minute as Musiala sealed the deal by slotting home following a strong run and cross by Davies.

Julian Nagelsmann believes Bayern Munich are ready for Der Klassiker after digging deep for a 1-0 home win over Arminia Bielefeld.

Bayern's clash with Bundesliga title rivals Borussia Dortmund is coming up next Saturday, with the great rivals sitting first and second in the German top flight.

Dortmund briefly occupied top spot on Saturday after a 3-1 win over Wolfsburg, in which Erling Haaland returned from injury with a goal.

But they were nudged off the summit later in the day when Leroy Sane's 71st-minute strike earned a depleted Bayern three valuable points. Eight days previously, Bayern were beaten by Augsburg, so a league win of any sort this time was to be welcomed.

Nagelsmann's squad has been hit hard by COVID-19 cases, but the head coach saw enough from the team he fielded against Arminia to be optimistic about the tussle with Dortmund.

The Bayern boss said: "I am very satisfied. It was a step forward after the Augsburg game.

"We had enough chances to win the game. We gave away a few chances in the second half. Dortmund won, so we were under a bit of pressure. It's a deserved victory. We don't always have to score three, four or five goals. One is enough.

"Overall, we defended well. Such games are important. If you lose those games, then it's not enough to just win games like next week.

"We are now heading to Dortmund as championship leaders and full of anticipation."

 

Sane's goal was Bayern's 102nd in the league this calendar year – a Bundesliga record, beating Cologne's mark from 1977.

Thomas Muller made his 396th Bundesliga appearance for Bayern, matching the great Franz Beckenbauer's total and going sixth on the club's all-time list, led by Sepp Maier (473).

Asked how many more games he could play, midfielder Muller told Sky Deutschland: "We'll see. If I stay fresh and fit, and well enough, then something is still possible. That is just a nice statistic, it simply shows the path I have already taken.

"But I am looking forward more to the road still ahead of me, which is certainly a bit shorter in comparison."

Leroy Sane broke Arminia Bielefeld's resolve as Bayern Munich battled to a 1-0 win at Allianz Arena to reclaim top spot from Borussia Dortmund in the Bundesliga.

Dortmund's earlier 3-1 win at Wolfsburg saw them climb to the summit, but Bayern responded in Saturday's late kick-off to move a point clear ahead of next week's Klassiker. 

After failing to forge a breakthrough in the first half of a league game for just the second time this term, Sane finally found the net for Bayern with 71 minutes played.

That was Bayern's 102nd league goal this calendar year – a Bundesliga record – and proved enough to help the hosts bounce back from last week's 2-1 loss at Augsburg.

Reigning champions Bayern had 11 attempts in the first half, six of those on target, without finding a way past inspired Arminia goalkeeper Stefan Ortega.

The visiting keeper did well to keep out a couple of Alphonso Davies efforts and a volley from Thomas Muller, who earlier had a header cleared off the line by Andres Andrade.

Sane continued Bayern's wastefulness by missing two big chances early in the second half, but the Germany international eventually provided the opener.

Collecting a pass from Muller outside the box, Sane whipped a shot past Ortega to give Bayern the goal they craved.

Arminia held Bayern 3-3 in their previous meeting in February, but the strugglers could not find a response this time and were fortunate not to concede a second when Serge Gnabry's shot came back out off the crossbar late on.

Hansi Flick became the first Germany head coach to win his first six matches in charge after his side crushed Liechtenstein 9-0 in World Cup qualifying Group J on Thursday. 

The former Bayern Munich boss kicked off his reign with a 2-0 win over these opponents in September and always looked like taking the outright record from Joachim Low following Ilkay Gundogan's early penalty, given for a foul which saw a red card issued to Jens Hofer.

Die Mannschaft, whose progress to next year's World Cup in Qatar had already been secured before the game in Wolfsburg, took full advantage of their numerical superiority, racing into a 4-0 half-time lead thanks to a Daniel Kaufmann own goal and strikes from Leroy Sane and Marco Reus. 

Sane added a fifth early in the second period, while a brace from Thomas Muller, a fine Ridle Baku strike and an own goal from Maximilian Goppel sealed a resounding win late on.

Gundogan stroked home from the penalty spot in the 11th minute after Hofer had kicked Leon Goretzka in the throat – an eye-watering challenge that resulted in the defender's dismissal.

Kaufmann prodded into his own net from Christian Gunter's low cross nine minutes later to double Germany's advantage, before Sane coolly slid past Benjamin Buchel after being played in by Goretzka.

Reus then scored a third goal in the space of just three minutes and 31 seconds, the Borussia Dortmund man slotting in after Buchel had made a mess of a deep cross.

Germany picked up where they left off at the start of the second period, Sane claiming his second with a scuffed shot from 10 yards in the 49th minute.

Muller scored with two close-range finishes either side of a superb Baku effort, while the unfortunate Goppel headed into his own net to wrap up the scoring in the 89th minute.

 

Robert Lewandowski scored a double as Bayern Munich defeated Union Berlin 5-2 to keep the reigning champions top of the Bundesliga.

Julian Nagelsmann's side were thrashed 5-0 by Borussia Monchengladbach in Wednesday's DFB Pokal clash but Lewandowski's first-half brace settled any early nerves on Saturday.

Leroy Sane put Bayern three ahead away from home, although Niko Giesselmann hit back for Union – as did Julian Ryerson after Kingsley Coman had made it four.

Thomas Muller sealed the victory with just over 10 minutes remaining, netting Bayern's 38th goal after just 10 matches of the league season in a new Bundesliga record.

The scoring started from the penalty spot after Paul Jaeckel was adjudged to have handled the ball and Lewandowksi slotted into the bottom-left corner.

The Poland forward soon added a second as he rifled into the top-right corner following a short free-kick routine.

Sane was denied from close range by Andreas Luthe shortly after, but the Bayern winger made amends, tapping in Muller's cross, before Giesselmann pulled one back for Union, who also saw Taiwo Awoniyi's strike ruled out for offside.

Manuel Neuer was twice required to parry away from Sheraldo Becker after the interval, and those saves provided a platform for Coman to extend the visitors' lead again as he blasted into the top-right corner.

Ryerson turned in from Kevin Behren's cutback after 65 minutes, but Union's 21-match unbeaten run at home in the Bundesliga would not be prolonged as Muller finished high into the net.

Dino Toppmoller hailed the way Bayern Munich's players overcame the absence of Julian Nagelsmann to clinch a 4-0 win over Benfica.

Bayern head coach Nagelsmann pulled out of the Champions League Group E game three hours beforehand with flu-like symptoms and handed the reins to assistant Toppmoller.

Two goals from Leroy Sane, one from Robert Lewandowski and an own goal from Benfica's Everton wrapped up a comfortable victory in Lisbon on Wednesday for the six-time winners.

It ensured Bayern have earned nine points from their first three games and are sitting pretty at the top of Group E, five points clear of second-placed Benfica with Barcelona further point behind.

Bayern have scored 12 goals and conceded none to give them their best start to a Champions League season and the joint-best overall in the competition.

"The boys were sensational, especially in the second half," Toppmoller told DAZN.

"Huge compliments to the team. It's not easy for the boys when the head coach pulls out at the last moment."

Benfica have never beaten Bayern in any of their 11 European meetings (drawn three, lost eight). 

But despite the scoreline, Bayern did not have it all their own way and were indebted to two fine saves from goalkeeper Manuel Neuer when it was 0-0.

The Germany international managed a clean sheet on his 100th appearance in the Champions League as he became only the fourth player to reach a century of appearances for the club in the competition, and only the second goalkeeper after Oliver Kahn (103).

"It's gigantic, I never would have believed it," Neuer said of the milestone.

"If someone had said that to me at the start of my career, I never would have thought it was possible. It's a great time and we had a great crowd today.

"I think the second half was incredible. We gave very little away and had the control, but we couldn't really break through. When the first goal went in, things became easier for us. It was a great evening for us."

Bayern Munich’s nine unbeaten matches against Benfica in the European Cup/Champions League (won six, drawn three) is the most by a team against an opponent since the tournament began in 1955.

Sane opened the scoring with a 70th-minute free-kick then rounded it off six minutes from time and acknowledged Bayern could have won by an even greater margin.

"I think we played a really, really good game," Sane said.

"Even in the first half. In attack, we could have finished off our chances a little better. But I am really happy with the performance. We had just had to play our game and be patient; in the end it worked out."

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