In the first Klassiker of the season, Bayern Munich claimed Super Cup glory against Borussia Dortmund following a tense penalty shootout victory, with Bayern’s Niklas Süle the hero.
The curtain raiser in the Bundesliga was decided by Marc Bartra’s missed penalty as Carlo Ancelotti’s side kicked off their campaign in the best possible way.
Although there was a lack of chances early in the game, it was clear that Borussia Dortmund had not lost their intense pressing tactics from last season, despite the managerial change at the Westfallenstadion. Meanwhile, despite Bayern Munich’s front line lacking the same pace as Dortmund’s, die Schwarzgelben’s high defensive line was a ripe area of exploitation for Ancelotti’s men.
On 11 minutes, Dortmund’s American wonderkid Christian Pulisic opened the scoring with a cool finish past Sven Ulreich. Spanish defender Javi Martínez was left red faced after some poor decision making in the Munich backline.
Bayern weren’t behind for long, with Polish hitman Robert Lewandowski bringing the Bavarians back level just minutes later. Following a dangerous run down Dortmund’s left-hand side from Joshua Kimmich, the young German put the ball on a plate for Lewandowski and the 28-year-old punished his old side.
Despite Dortmund’s impressive start to the game, Bayern quickly asserted their dominance and took control of the game. Peter Bosz’ side were limited to breakaway chances and, as is so often with Dortmund, looked susceptible to runs in behind from the Bayern forwards because of their high line.
Bürki was fortunate to survive a couple of chances from Germany international Thomas Müller, beaten just once, only to be saved by the woodwork.
Both Dortmund and Bayern looked susceptible down their left-hand side, with natural centre-back Dan-Axel Zagadou (Borussia Dortmund) and Brazilian right-back Rafinha (Bayern Munich) being used in unorthodox positions by their respective managers.
A flurry of late first half chances for Bayern Munich came to nothing for the Bavarians and the sides entered the break at 1-1. Dortmund, despite starting the game quickly, were overshadowed by their Bundesliga rivals for the majority of the opening 45 minutes.
Dortmund made one change at half time, bringing former Bayern midfielder Sebastian Rode on for debutant Mahmoud Dahoud. In the early stages of the second half, Dortmund started the stronger. Similar to the first half, the pace at which Peter Bosz’ side came out appeared to catch Bayern Munich out.
Despite the introduction of former TSG Hoffenheim defender Niklas Süle for Bayern, the opening 20 minutes of the second half were fairly uneventful. A few half chances for Borussia Dortmund failed to cause Carlo Ancelotti’s side any real danger – however, the lack of dominance in the midfield for Bayern was a clear sign of Rode’s influence for Dortmund.
Having survived a golden opportunity for Robert Lewandowski, Dortmund provided a deadly counter-attack that saw Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang chip Bayern’s goalkeeper with the outside of his right boot. Ousmane Dembélé was the key man again for Borussia Dortmund, sliding through a perfectly weighted pass for the Gabonese striker who restored Dortmund’s advantage with ease.
There was little to talk about in terms of key chances until the 88th minute, where a controversial free kick was given that resulted in yet another Bayern Munich equaliser.
Kimmich stabbed at the ball after it dropped at his feet following Niklas Süle’s dominating header. The ball trickled over the line following a double deflection off Roman Bürki and ?ukasz Piszczek, ending Dortmund’s hopes of finishing the tie off within 90 minutes.
As the full-time whistle went, nerves grew even further as the tie would be decided by a penalty shootout. Lewandowski stepped up for the opening spot kick, calmly sending Bürki the wrong way. In response, Dortmund’s Dembélé confidently slotted home with his right foot.
Further success from Ribéry and Max Philipp was ended when Kimmich’s penalty was saved by Dortmund’s Swiss keeper. Aubameyang gave Dortmund the advantage with a cool finish, piling the pressure on Bayern newbie Sebastian Rudy, who responded with a perfect penalty. Dortmund’s next man – Rode – also saw his spot kick saved which levelled the score at 3-3, with Arturo Vidal comfortably scoring Bayern’s last penalty. Gonzalo Castro ensured the shootout went to sudden death by sending Sven Ulreich the wrong way.
New Dortmund centre-back Niklas Süle picked out the top corner for Bayern and Marc Bartra, under pressure, saw his effort saved, gifting Bayern Munich victory in the Super Cup.