Promoted Bochum stuns Bayern Munich 4-2

Bochum's Gerrit Holtmann, right, celebrates after scoring his side's 4th goal during the German Bundesliga soccer match between VfL Bochum and Bayern Munich in Bochum, Germany, Saturday, Feb. 12, 2022. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)
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BERLIN (AP) — Promoted Bochum stunned Bayern Munich and the Bundesliga with a 4-2 win over the Bavarian powerhouse on Saturday, preventing the league leader from going 12 points clear.

Bochum even had to come from behind to do it, after Robert Lewandowski’s opener for the visitors stoked fears of another thrashing following Bayern’s 7-0 rout when the teams met in Munich in September.

But Thomas Reis’ team answered with four first-half goals, three of them in a six-minute spell which left Bayern reeling from Bochum’s intensity.

“We wanted to take the fun of football away from Bayern,” Reis said. “We could have scored the fifth goal.”

The visitors were left to contemplate an unforeseen setback before their Champions League playoff match at Salzburg on Wednesday. Bayern hadn’t conceded more than three goals before halftime since November 1975 when it conceded five in a 6-0 loss at Eintracht Frankfurt.

“Every player has to ask themselves if they threw everything into it,” Bayern midfielder Joshua Kimmich said.

Lewandowski opened the scoring in the ninth minute, but Bochum struck back five minutes later through Christopher Antwi-Adjei, who was set up by Gerrit Holtmann, evaded Niklas Süle and let fly inside the post.

Bochum was awarded a penalty when Dayot Upamecano’s outstretched arm blocked Elvis Rexhbecaj’s attempted cross. Jürgen Locadia converted the spot kick in the 38th.

Cristian Gamboa then scored a contender for goal of the season, when he played the ball through Kingsley Coman’s legs and a one-two with Patrick Osterhage – who returned the ball with his heel – before firing a rocket of a shot into the far corner.

As if to show it was no fluke, Holtmann repeated the feat from the other side four minutes later, when he played the ball between Upemacano’s legs before unleashing another spectacular shot inside the far corner.

It brought back memories of Bochum’s near success at home over a star-studded Bayern team in September 1976, when the latter fought from four goals down to win 6-5 with Uli Hoeneß scoring the winner in the 89th. Karl-Heinz Rummenigge and Gerd Müller were also among the Bayern scorers.

This time, Bochum held on for the win.

The home team twice had goals ruled out for offside after the break, before Armel Bella Kotchap made a goal-saving clearance to deny Lewandowski at the other end. Goalkeeper Michael Esser was next to deny Lewandowski, before the Poland star finally found a way through in the 75th. It was Lewandowski’s 26th goal in 22 games this season.

Lewandowski later struck the crossbar with a free kick and it was as close as the defending champions got to a fightback.

“The Bochumers certainly didn’t do it badly. But we have to recognize that it was an absolutely deserved loss,” Kimmich said.

Bayern was without goalkeeper Manuel Neuer, who underwent knee surgery last Sunday. Sven Ulreich filled in for the second league game this season. Bayern also lost the first, 2-1 at home to Borussia Mönchengladbach last month.


Hertha Berlin joined Stuttgart and Augsburg as a prime candidate for relegation by losing at last-placed Greuther Fürth 2-1.

Stuttgart remained second from bottom after losing at third-placed Bayer Leverkusen 4-2 in the late game. Pellegrino Matarazzo’s team has lost six straight games.

Borussia Mönchengladbach eased its relegation worries with a 3-2 win over Augsburg, which remained in the relegation playoff place. Wolfsburg defeated Eintracht Frankfurt 2-0 for its second consecutive win.

Also, Freiburg came from behind to draw with Mainz 1-1.