MUNICH, Germany (Reuters) – Bayern Munich struck three times in the opening 21 minutes en route to a 5-0 demolition of Viktoria Plzen in the Champions League on Tuesday to stay top of Group C and set a record for the longest unbeaten run in group matches.
Leroy Sane scored twice while Serge Gnabry, Sadio Mane and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting were also on target for the Germans, who have now gone 31 group matches in the competition without defeat, passing the mark set by Real Madrid.
They have also scored nine goals in their last two matches in all competitions after their 4-0 league win over Bayer Leverkusen on Saturday that ended a four-game winless run in the Bundesliga.
The Bavarians, who face Borussia Dortmund in the Bundesliga’s Der Klassiker on Saturday, found no resistance from the Czechs and made the most of big gaps in their defence at every opportunity.
“The lads did it really well. That is how to approach a game,” said Bayern coach Julian Nagelsmann. “It was decided relatively quickly and then the game sort of trundled along.”
“But that is also mature with an eye on Saturday, not to play out every attack. It was a good game to see that we are taking steps in the right direction.”
Goals from Sane in the seventh minute, Gnabry five minutes later and Mane in the 21st quickly put the hosts in the driving seat.
Despite the absence of Thomas Mueller and Joshua Kimmich due to COVID-19, they completely overran their opponents with their slick passing game.
Jamal Musiala should have made it 4-0 in the 25th when he had only the keeper to beat but fired his effort against Marian Tvrdon.
The Germany international thought he had made amends in the 36th when he curled a shot past Tvrdon after a quick move by the Germans, but his effort was ruled offside.
Bayern, however, picked up where they left off after the break with Sane latching onto a perfectly lofted Mane pass to fire in five minutes after the restart.
Substitute Choupo-Moting scored with a shot off the post just before the hour mark to complete the rout and put Bayern top of the group on nine points from three games.
Inter Milan and Barcelona, both on three points, face each other later on Tuesday.
(Reporting by Karolos GrohmannEditing by Toby Davis)