Bayern clinch 11th straight Bundesliga title as Mainz held leaders Dortmund

Berlin, May 28 (IANS) Front runners Borussia Dortmund were held to a 2-2 draw with Mainz and allowed the second-placed Bayern Munich to snatch their 11th consecutive title and 33rd overall thanks to Jamal Musiala’s last-gasp 2-1 winner against Cologne in the last round of the Bundesliga 2022-23 season on Saturday night.

The German giants knew they needed a victory over Cologne to maintain their chances as well as a draw or defeat from Dortmund against Mainz.

Bayern caught a fairy-tale start into the last match day as Kingsley Coman finished off a counterattack from the edge of the box into the top right corner with eight minutes gone.

The visitors should have extended their advantage ten minutes later, but Thomas Muller’s header rattled only the woodwork, a Xinhua report said.

Bayern seemed content with the narrow lead but had to be careful as Cologne came close in the 23rd minute when Davie Selke pulled wide from a promising position.

Thomas Tuchel’s boys thought they had made it two just before the break, but Leroy Sane’s goal was disallowed due to a foregone hand ball.

Cologne increased the pressure after the restart whereas Bayern remained harmless and got punished with the equalizer in the 80th minute when Dejan Ljubicic converted a hand ball penalty to stun the visitors.

Bayern pressed frenetically as a draw wasn’t enough and got rewarded in the 89th minute after substitute Musiala danced through Cologne defence before drilling the ball past goalkeeper Marvin Schwabe to nail the 2-1 win.

“The game pretty much sums up my spell here. We controlled things from the get-go, we took the lead, but we missed to add more goals. We then handed over control once again and conceded a penalty. Jamal had his moment though and saved us,” said Bayern coach Thomas Tuchel.

Elsewhere, Borussia Dortmund gave away the title at the last round as the BVB played out only a 2-2 draw with stubborn Mainz which wasn’t enough due to Bayern’s goal difference. “Congrats to Bayern, who sit atop the standings and deservedly defended the title. It is hard though, and it doesn’t feel right. We were 90 minutes away from bringing the title back home,” said Dortmund coach Edin Terzic.

Leipzig completed the season on the third spot after easing 4-2 past Schalke, who relegated after finishing the season on the 17th spot.

Union Berlin booked its berth for the Champions League after finishing fourth thanks to a 1-0 win over Werder Bremen.

Eintracht Frankfurt came from behind and stunned Freiburg 2-1 courtesy of second half goals from Randal Kolo Muani and Eric Junior Dia Ebimbe.

Relegation-threatened Bochum stayed in Germany’s top flight after trashing ten-men Bayern Leverkusen 3-0.

Wolfsburg missed the chance to play in Europe after losing 2-1 to already-relegated Hertha Berlin.

Stuttgart shared the spoils with Hoffenheim and will have to go through the relegation play-off while Borssia Monchengladbach overpowered Augsburg 2-0.

–IANS

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