Bayern Munich end the first half of the 2011/12 Bundesliga season top of the league after a comfortable 3-0 victory over a poor FC Köln.
The record champions were reduced to 10 men as early as the 33rd minute when a frustrated Franck Ribery received two yellow cards in the space of a minute.
The French international had been denied by Michael Rensing a couple of times in the opening half hour and his frustration appeared to be boiling over. Both Ribery and Henrique Sereno received a yellow card for arguing, before the Munich player went back for some seconds and grabbed his opponent by the throat.
Despite playing with one less player in the second half, Bayern Munich took the game to the relegation struggler’s. Mario Gomez started the scoring right after the break. Thomas Müller drove down the right side before providing Gomez with an open goal tap in for his 16th goal of the season.
David Alaba doubled the league leaders’ lead with a tap in of his own after Toni Kroos set up his unmarked team mate. Kroos got himself on the scoresheet with 2 minutes to go after substitutes Ivica Olic and Alaba combined to set up the youngster.
FC Köln were dire and seemingly had no self-belief in stopping Bayern Munich, despite holding the Jupp Heynckes’ 10-man side to 0-0 at the end of the first half.
Bayern Munich’s push to win back the Bundesliga remains on course as they now lead by 6 points with title challengers and defending champions Borussia Dortmund travelling to SC Freiburg on Saturday.
Jupp Heynckes’ side will face Bochum in the 3rd round of the DFB Cup on Tuesday before they head into the winter break before returning to face Borussia Mönchengladbach on Friday 20 January. FC Köln have already been eliminated from the national cup. Stale Solbakken’s side do not play again until Saturday 21 January when they travel to VfL Wolfsburg.