Bayern wins 1,000th Bundesliga match, extends record start
BERLIN (AP) — Arjen Robben scored on his return from injury Saturday as Bayern Munich defeated visiting Cologne 4–0 for the club’s 1,000th Bundesliga victory.
Robben, who hadn’t played since picking up a groin injury on international duty on Sept. 3, broke the deadlock in the 35th minute after Robert Lewandowski’s initial effort was blocked.
“Very happy,” Robben said. “It’s nice when you are rewarded for your hard work by being back on the pitch.”
Arturo Vidal made it 2–0 five minutes later with a lightly deflected effort after Kingsley Coman pulled the ball back, Lewandowski claimed his 13th of the season in the 62nd with a header off Douglas Costa's free kick, and Thomas Mueller completed the scoring with a penalty in the 77th.
“They defended with 10 men. It was important for us to score the first goal. Then when you get the second goal before half time—I wouldn't say it’s settled—but it looks good,” Robben said.
Bayern, which experienced its first defeat of the season at Arsenal in the Champions League on Tuesday, moved provisionally 10 points clear of Borussia Dortmund after extending its league record start to 10 wins from 10 games.
“Nobody can imagine how hard a success it is to be mentally strong every weekend and to win every game,” Bayern coach Pep Guardiola said.
Also Saturday, Admir Mehmedi scored in the 89th minute for Bayer Leverkusen to overturn a two-goal deficit and beat Stuttgart 4–3, Wolfsburg defeated Darmstadt 1-0, Eintracht Frankfurt came from behind to win 2–1 at Hannover and Werder Bremen won 3–1 at Mainz.
Mitchell Weiser’s 10th-minute deflected strike was enough for Hertha Berlin to win the late game 1–0 at promoted Ingolstadt. The home side had 16 shots at goal compared to the visitors’ five but couldn't make the breakthrough.
Earlier, Stuttgart went 2–0 up with goals from Martin Harnik in the 51st and Daniel Didavi three minutes later. Karim Bellarabi pulled one back—shortly after coming on as a substitute—only for Lukas Rupp to restore the visitors' two-goal advantage when he was set up by Timo Werner.
“I believed the whole time that we could come back,” said Leverkusen coach Roger Schmidt, whose last game was a wild 4–4 draw with Roma in the Champions League on Tuesday.
Schmidt’s side pulled level with two goals in two minutes from Sebastian Boenisch and then Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez in the 71st, before Mehmedi sealed all the points on a counterattack.
“Whether it's an issue of tactics or quality, I don’t know,” said Didavi after Stuttgart's seventh defeat in 10 games.
Daniel Caligiuri’s 78th-minute strike was enough for Wolfsburg to beat Darmstadt and consolidate fourth place.
Frankfurt had 19-year-old Marc Stendera to thank for ending its five-game run without a win.
A brilliant run from Japan midfielder Hiroshi Kiyotake set up Felix Klaus to put Hannover ahead in the 51st, only for Stendera to equalize six minutes later and claim the winner in the 65th.
Three goals in eight minutes gave Bremen a 3–0 half-time lead at Mainz and ended the side's run of five defeats.
Anthony Ujah scored twice, first with his head in the 39th and then with his left boot in the 44th, before Fin Bartels scored in first-half injury time.
Japanese forward Yoshinori Muto claimed Mainz’s last-minute consolation.