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Costa shines for Bayern in penalty-shootout defeat to Guangzhou

Luiz Felipe Scolari’s Guangzhou Evergrande claimed a surprise win over Bayern Munich on penalties at the Tianhe Stadium on Thursday.

Completing their tour of China following back-to-back wins over Valencia and Inter, Bayern were unable to break down a stubborn Guangzhou side, which featured Robinho for the first time, and paid the price.

As the game went to penalties, Thomas Muller failed to convert the first spot-kick of the shootout before Feng Xiaoting delivered at the crucial point.

Bayern – who face Wolfsburg in the DFL SuperCup on August 1 – offered their biggest threat through recent signing Douglas Costa but will target improvement ahead of their clash with the DFB-Pokal winners.

Pierre Hojbjerg should have scored five minutes in when he glanced a dangerous cross Mario Gotze cross wide from point-blank range before Manuel Neuer was forced into a series of saves.

Debutant Robinho was among the chances, although the German champions regained control prior to the half-hour mark. Had Robert Lewandowski sorted his feet in time, he may have had Bayern’s first shot on target after 26 minutes.

David Alaba – a late swap for Mehdi Benatia due to a calf problem – was required to block Ricardo Goulart’s goalbound effort soon after as the sides went in goalless at the break.

Pep Guardiola introduced Costa and Thiago Alcantara at the break and the pair offered a second-half threat – the former squaring for Lewandowski only for Feng to clear in time.

Costa again went close before the hour – his shot squeezing through Zeng Cheng’s legs – before the Guangzhou goalkeeper pulled off an impressive save to deny the former Shakhtar man. 

Guangzhou forward Gao Lin then spurned a one-on-one with Ivan Lucic, prior to Lewandowski and Costa both going close late on.

Ultimately, Muller’s missed penalty proved costly as Bayern were also punished for their lack of cutting edge against the Chinese champions.

Thu 23 Jul, 2015
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