The long-awaited 2014/15 Bundesliga season opened with Bayern Munich taking on VfL Wolfsburg, and it was the defending champions who came away with the three points.
Bayern Munich beat Wolfsburg 2-1 in Munich in the first game of the 2014/15 Bundesliga season. In a game that came to life in the second half, Bayern did enough when it mattered to seal the three points.
The home side's starting XI included a returning Holger Badstuber, a 17-year-old Gianluca Guadino and league debutants Juan Bernat and Robert Lewandowski. Wolfsburg also had a few new faces - Sebastian Jung, Josuha Guilavogui and Aaron Hunt all made their league debuts for the club, while Max Grün stepped in for the ill Diego Benaglio.
In typical season-opening fashion, both sides took their time to grow into the game - taking fewer risks and focusing on being in the right positions. As a result, clear-cut chances were at a premium in the opening half an hour.
Then, almost as if a tap had been turned on, Bayern's attacking game flowed into action. Wolfsburg goalkeeper Max Grün made a number of fine saves to deny Arjen Robben and an acrobatic Robert Lewandowski. However, eight minutes before the break he was beaten. Arjen Robben got the better of Ricardo Rodriguez out wide and crossed for Thomas Müller, who was in the right place at the right time to convert past Grün. Wolfsburg's sterling early efforts had been undone, but half time gave them the chance to regroup.
The second half burst into life as Arjen Robben doubled Bayern Munich's advantage only two minutes after the restart. Robert Lewandowski flicked the ball through and the Dutchman weaved his way around Wolfsburg's defenders before firing home when the space presented itself.
The game stayed open and end-to-end though and it didn't take long before Wolfsburg pegged Bayern back - Ivica Olic scoring a beautiful, dipping effort over the top of Manuel Neuer.
Lewandowski missed a chance to restore Bayern's two-goal lead, before Wolfsburg substitute Junior Malanda missed a glorious chance to level the scores. His original effort was saved and hit the bar, but the Belgian midfielder remarkably failed to convert the rebound from a yard out.
Bayern substitute Sebastian Rode then wrongly had a goal ruled out, denying him of his first Bayern goal and the home side of a calmer finish. Wolfsburg tried to rouse themselves again, but couldn't and in the end both sub Shaqiri (saved by Grün) and Robben (hit the bar) had chances that nearly tipped the scales even more in Bayern's favor.
"We haven't had that many training sessions yet, so it's not as if we're talking about a side in the middle of October. We played well in parts today, and we've got to seize on that in the future," said Thomas Müller afterwards. Bayern were certainly not at their best for extended periods of the game, but considering injuries and, as Müller stated, the stage of the season, a win is all that really matters.