Kiel players celebrate their shootout win over Bayern
In one of German football’s biggest shocks of this century, Bayern Munich were knocked out of Der Pokal (the German Cup) by second-tier side Holstein Kiel, who won 6-5 on penalties after a 2-2 draw in extra time.
In the shootout, both sides converted all five spot-kicks – how very German – before Bayern’s Marc Roca had his attempt saved. Fin Bartels coolly converted the winning penalty to eliminate the holders in the second round. It’s Bayern’s earliest Pokal exit since 2000.
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The visitors went ahead through former Arsenal winger Serge Gnabry in the 14th minute. Bayern were then done on the break in the 37th minute, Bartels dashing past Niklas Sule to make it 1-1.
Bayern head coach Hansi Flick had made five changes to the team that lost 3-2 at Borussia Monchengladbach in the Bundesliga last Friday, but his team continued to look vulnerable even after Leroy Sane’s free-kick restored their lead. Hauke Wahl’s late header sent the game into extra time.
Kiel, who are currently third in the second division, resisted their opponents and held their nerve in the shootout to earn a last-16 tie against fellow 2. Bundesliga side Darmstadt. “We believed throughout that we could spring a big surprise here tonight,” Bartels said afterwards. “Overall I think it capped a very good performance from us and we deserved it.”
“We lost to the underdogs and they did everything they could,” Bayern forward Thomas Muller said. “We had chances in the first half, but we made mistakes and Kiel punished us. They were very efficient but we should have won the game. We are out and it’s bitter.”
That’s two defeats in a row for Bayern, which is hardly a crisis. After his stellar 2020, Hansi Flick might be under pressure for the first time in his tenure – Bayern look very creaky at the back right now.