Lewandowski's penalty keeps Bayern 4 points clear of Leipzig

·2 min read

BERLIN — Robert Lewandowski’s penalty was enough for Bayern Munich to consolidate its Bundesliga lead at the halfway stage of the season with a 1-0 win at Bavarian rival Augsburg on Wednesday.

Lewandowski’s spot kick in the 13th minute was Bayern’s only reward for dominating the first half, while the visitors had to hold on in the second with Augsburg missing a host of chances —including a penalty of its own.

Lewandowski scored his 22nd league goal of the season from the spot after a foul from Augsburg midfielder Rani Khedira on Lucas Hernández.

Serge Gnabry and Thomas Müller both missed chances before the break, when Khedira made way for Tobias Strobl.

The home side improved significantly in the second half but missed a great chance to equalize when Alfred Finnbogason – who had only come on as a substitute a couple of minutes before – smashed his penalty off the left post in the 76th. Benjamin Pavard conceded the spot kick for handball.

Another Augsburg substitute, Fredrik Jensen, shot over from another good position shortly afterward.

UNION BEATEN

Bayern stayed four points clear of Leipzig, which earned a hard-fought 1-0 victory over Union Berlin thanks to Emil Forsberg’s 70th-minute strike.

Forsberg had come on as a substitute 10 minutes before and capitalized on a rare lapse from Union’s defence to turn and score past Andreas Luthe.

Leipzig goalkeeper Peter Gulacsi denied Marius Bülter an injury-time equalizer as Union failed to score for the first time in the league this season.

Union dropped to sixth place after its first defeat in seven games since losing the Berlin derby 3-1 at Hertha on Dec. 4.

BIELEFELD RELIEF

Arminia Bielefeld defeated Stuttgart 3-0 at home to stay out of the relegation zone after Cologne’s late 2-1 win at last-place Schalke earlier Wednesday. Cologne remained 16th in the 18-team division with Bielefeld two points clear in 15th.

Also, Eintracht Frankfurt came back to draw 2-2 at Freiburg.

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Ciarán Fahey on Twitter: https://twitter.com/cfaheyAP

CiaráN Fahey, The Associated Press