Bayern Munich exorcised the ghosts of their DFL-Super Cup defeat to Borussia Dortmund with a 2-0 win over Sao Paulo on Wednesday.
Mario Mandzukic opened the scoring with a simple finish early in the second half before youngster Mitchell Weiser extended the German side’s lead by following up after the ball had struck the post.
And, though Sao Paulo missed the chance to grab a late consolation as goalkeeper Rogerio Ceni failed to convert a penalty, Bayern’s place in the final of the Audi Cup friendly tournament alongside Manchester City had already been clinched.
Pep Guardiola had been without Franck Ribery and Manuel Neuer for the loss to Dortmund, but returned both to his starting line-up following their recovery from slight injuries.
And Bayern started all the better for it, as they controlled possession in the opening stages against a helpless Sao Paulo.
The hosts soon almost had reward for their utter domination of the ball, but veteran Ceni proved equal to Arjen Robben’s volley from the edge of the box.
Claudio Pizarro was also denied shortly after when his side-footed effort from close range was somehow cleared off the line.
That masterful piece of defending would ensure the teams went in at half-time level, but it did not take long for Bayern to find a breakthrough courtesy of substitute Mandzukic early in the second.
The Croatian striker failed to convert from a Robben cross moments after his arrival, but did not make the same mistake twice as he swept home the Dutchman’s next in-swinging ball from wide at the far post.
Bayern’s superiority looked unlikely to reap further dividends as the match meandered to a close, but they would finally grab a second in the 87th minute.
Weiser continued his run into the box after Xherdan Shaqiri had struck from distance and was the lucky recipient of a rebound off the woodwork that he could hardly miss.
There was still time for more drama, however, with Sao Paulo receiving a penalty for a push in the Bayern box late on.
But Ceni could only hit the post as his German counterpart Neuer produced a wonderful stop down low to his left to keep the score at 2-0.
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