MUNICH: Thomas Mueller set up one goal and scored a second-half winner as Bayern Munich struggled past Freiburg 2-1 on Sunday to snap their opponents’ five-game winning run and extend their lead at the top of the Bundesliga to four points.

Bayern, who were eliminated in the German Cup by second division’s Holstein Kiel in midweek after losing to Borussia Moenchengladbach in the league, have now conceded at least one goal for the 11th straight league game and were far from impressive.

The win, however, lifted them to 36 points, four ahead of RB Leipzig and seven clear of Bayer Leverkusen and Borussia Dortmund in third and fourth places.

The Bavarians went ahead after seven minutes as Robert Lewandowski became the first Bundesliga player to score 21 goals in the season’s opening 16 matches when he found space in the penalty area from a Mueller pass.

Freiburg struck against the run of play from substitute Nils Petersen’s first contact with the ball, a diving header at the far post in the 62nd minute for a record-extending 28th league goal as a substitute.

With Bayern seemingly heading for a draw, Leroy Sane directed a Kingsley Coman cross on for Mueller to snatch the winner in the 74th.

Real Madrid outcast Luka Jovic scored twice on his return on loan to Eintracht Frankfurt for a 3-1 victory over bottom side Schalke 04.

The Serb, who joined until the end of the season, scored his first goal with a quick break after teenager Matthew Hoppe had levelled for Schalke — his fourth goal in two games — following Andre Silva’s lead.

Jovic added a second with a powerful shot in second half stoppage time to lift Frankfurt to seventh on 26.

Published in Dawn, January 19th, 2021

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