European Leagues

Bayern and Dortmund Victorious, Leipzig Held Upon Bundesliga Return

The German Bundesliga returned over the past weekend to much excitement and fanfare, becoming the first major European league to return to action amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The opening day saw Dortmund take on rivals Schalke in the classic Revierderby, behind closed doors at the Signal Iduna Park. A game that would normally draw a passionate crowd to pack the stadium to the brim, the eerie silence gave the match a feel of a pre-season or training match.

However, the hosts wasted no time returning to their same free-scoring form, with 19-year-old striker Erling Haaland getting on the end of Thorgan Hazard’s cross to find the net after 28 minutes. The side doubled their lead just before half-time, with left wing-back Raphael Guerreiro bursting into the area and slotting a finish into the far post.

Thorgan Hazard got himself on the scoresheet three minutes after the break, while Guerreiro scored his second of the match to seal the result in the 63rd minute. Attacking midfielder Julian Brandt finished the game with three assists to his name, rounding off a very impressive performance for the Dortmund front line.

Meanwhile, third-placed RB Leipzig dropped two valuable points at home during their match against Freiburg. The side conceded a sloppy goal from a corner after 34 minutes but was eventually able to draw level thanks to captain Yussuf Poulsen with just under ten minutes left to play. The result saw them fall into fourth place, as Borussia Monchengladbach took their place with a 3-1 win over Eintracht Frankfurt.

The following day, league leaders and defending champions Bayern Munich took to the field, hoping to maintain their place atop the table with a trip to Union Berlin. They opened the scoring after 40 minutes thanks to a goal by Robert Lewandowski from the penalty spot and wrapped up the result with ten minutes left thanks to a header by Benjamin Pavard.

These results see Bayern maintain their four-goal lead over Dortmund, with the two sides set to meet in just two weeks time for a match which could end up being a pivotal moment.