Bayern Munich deal Barcelona another heavy Champions League defeat
Well, at least it wasn't 8-2.
Though the score wasn't as lopsided as the last time these teams met in August 2020, the comfort in which Bayern brushed aside Barcelona was another indication of how the gap between Europe's elite and this colossal yet crumbling Catalonian institution has grown.
None of Barcelona's five efforts toward Bayern's goal were on target. It was the first time Barca have failed to register a shot on target in a Champions League match since the 2003-04 campaign.
Thomas Muller was invited to shoot for the visitors' opener. The ball spilled to the gangly attacker ahead of the Barcelona backline and, as the defenders retreated, Muller shifted the ball out of his feet before firing in a shot that deflected off Eric Garcia's back and into the net from around 25 yards.
Robert Lewandowski poked in after the break when Jamal Musiala's thunderous effort pinged off the post toward the Polish striker. Lewandowski rounded off the scoring in the 85th minute when he coolly evaded Gerard Pique's desperate lunge before steering the ball past Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
"We competed in the first half, Bayern took the lead with a deflected goal. In the end, I don't know how many kids we had on. It is what it is, we are what we are," Pique said post-match, according to ESPN's Samuel Marsden.
Elsewhere in Group E, Benfica drew 0-0 at Dynamo Kyiv.