Bayern Munich thrash Werder Bremen to put pressure on Dortmund
Bayern Munich opened up an eight-point lead at the top of the Bundesliga thanks to a 5-0 win over Werder Bremen at the Allianz Arena.
Thiago Alcantara opened the scoring after nine minutes with Thomas Muller adding a second after half an hour
Muller scored again midway through the second half before Robert Lewandowski got in on the act with a late fourth and Thiago finished Bremen off with a fifth.
Bayern's lead could be cut to five points again when Borussia Dortmund host Mainz on Sunday, but the win will have boosted their confidence ahead of a decisive midweek Champions League last-16 clash with Italian champions Juventus.
A muscular injury denied Bremen's top-scorer Claudio Pizarro the opportunity to face his former club, so Sambou Yatabare -- without a goal yet in German football -- took his place.
He would not have expected to see much of the ball, and so it proved as Bayern crowned a bright opening with a goal after just eight minutes had been played.
Kingsley Coman sent in a delivery from the right wing and Thiago stuck out a leg to beat his marker to the ball and divert it past Felix Wiedwald.
Mario Gotze's angled shot was turned wide by Wiedwald's fingertip save before the Bremen goalkeeper came out and did enough to put Muller off on Bayern's next attack.
Wiedwald could do little to prevent Muller from beating him after half an hour, though, with the German attacking midfielder using every inch of his long legs to turn Coman's cross inside the Bremen goalkeeper's near post.
Franck Ribery headed Xabi Alonso's cross over on the stroke of half-time, while the diligent Wiedwald got his fingertips to Thiago's shot to tip it onto the top of the crossbar as Bayern started the second half the way they had finished the first.
Gotze's shot was then saved at the near post as Bremen could be forgiven for anxiously recalling 6-1 and 7-0 defeats among recent meetings with the Bavarians.
Wiedwald kept the scoreline reasonable with further saves from Coman and Ribery before Muller beat him with his 19th goal of the season, a volley from five yards out.
Guardiola's attention turned to Wednesday night and Joshua Kimmich was withdrawn, and the pace of the game dropped.
He could still afford himself the luxury of sending the Bundesliga's top-scorer Lewandowski on for Muller, and he was gifted his 24th goal of the season by Alejandro Galvez, who negligently played him in to slot past Wiedwald.
Wiedwald then turned David Alaba's shot onto the post before Thiago added a second from another Coman pass to complete Bremen's misery.