Germany: Bundesliga
FT
1 - 4
(0 - 2)
Hertha BSC
FC Bayern
J. Ekkelenkamp (80)
C. Tolisso (25), T. Müller (45), L. Sané (75), S. Gnabry (79)
By Scott Reynolds

Bayern dominate Hertha in lopsided contest

Little surprise in 4-1 victory.
Players, fans, management, and staff of Borussia Dortmund must have been wondering - with no small amount of frustration - what happened to the version of Hertha BSC that they encountered on a similar dreary late afternoon last month, when they were soundly beaten by the West Berliners in what, at the time, was chalked up as the death knell for their title chances.

On another rainy affair under the floodlights of the Olympiastadion, the maximum 3000 present witnessed the kind of Hertha performance they've become accustomed to in recent years. (They lost.)

Bayern had a goal called back on offside just shy of the 2 minute mark, and while the VAR ruling was correct, it was so by a centimetre or two, and while few would have expected Hertha to mount a serious challenge against the reigning serial champions, the inevatibility of the end result wouldn't take much longer to rear its ugly head.

Bayern won the contest 4-1, and it was never much in doubt. The most optimistic of Hertha supporters, hoping for some divine redemption after the (latest) recent embarrassment in the past week's derby against Union Berlin in the DFB-Pokal, were left disappointed. Bayern, missing brilliant regulars Alphonso Davies and Leon Goretzka, were unapologetically dominant.

Outshot at a whopping rate of 30-5, Hertha struggled to conjure up even the least of what could be called an offensive opportunity. Their lone goal came as a garbage time consolation marker from Jurgen Ekkelenkamp after an unlucky bounce at 80', once they were already down 4-0 with the match beyond reach, and then some.

Bayern, with a new-look 4-1-4-1 formation, looked as comfortable as they might have in their old 4-2-3-1, and their tactical flexibility, as well as ability to adapt missing key players, may aid them on their quest for Champions League glory, the Bundesliga title being (sadly) long since forgotten as a challenge. They submitted in the past year to a Paris St.-Germain squad which bears the same warts as the current one, and despite its star power, can hardly be seen as a measuring stick for a team that wishes to be among-if not the-best in Europe. A two-legged affair against a powerful opponent-Liverpool, Manchester City, and the like-may be a cold shower for the perpetually reigning Bavarian monarchs, who haven't faced down a rival of such a level in quite some time (with a generous draw in the current season of UEFA's top competition fully taken into account).

Hertha, in the meantime, had bad come to worse recently, as an organised group of fans stormed their training ground on Saturday, to give a piece of their mind to the current squad on their recent failures. For people who claim to be in support of the club, it certainly was a curious move, when one considers that such an event may be taken into consideration when potential purchases are considering their future employer. I doubt anyone looks forward to being accosted and berated, unexpectedly, at their place of work.

In the end, a dominant display from the Bavarians showed itself on the scoreline, as often seems to happen. A pitiful display from the Berliners showed itself on the scoreline, as often seems to happen.

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