Referee Stephanie Frappart overturned a late penalty for Bayern Munich to ensure they were held to a goalless draw by Copenhagen in the Champions League.
The Group A fixture at Allianz Arena was not without controversy after Frappart pointed to the spot in the second minute of added time when the ball hit the arm of Peter Ankersen, but the French official was told to look at the incident on the pitchside monitor by VAR and changed her decision.
It occurred minutes after Bayern captain Manuel Neuer had made a superb double save to deny Mohamed Elyounoussi after Copenhagen produced an excellent display, although the post-match focus centred on Frappart.
Frappart’s decision to subsequently not give the spot-kick occurred 24 hours after Paris St Germain were given a controversial penalty against Newcastle in similar circumstances, but the draw did boost Copenhagen’s hopes of finishing second behind Bayern in the group.
The points are shared
— FC Bayern Munich (@FCBayernEN) November 29, 2023
Bayern boss Thomas Tuchel had confirmed on Tuesday that Thomas Muller would earn a rare start and he was one of four changes made from Friday’s win over Cologne, but Harry Kane still led the line for the home side.
While Bayern already had a place in the knockout phase assured, they were eager to keep up their perfect record.
Copenhagen had other ideas, especially after Galatasaray and Manchester United shared the spoils in the early kick-off, and the visitors had the first effort of note, but defender Denis Vavro dragged well wide from 35 yards.
The first opening for Bayern arrived 60 seconds later in the 14th minute when Muller’s header dropped for 18-year-old forward Mathys Tel, but he sliced wide.
Chances remained limited with the home team struggling to get out of second gear, although Raphael Guerreiro fired wide from a corner midway through the first half.
Tuchel would have been growing frustrated, but breathed a sigh of relief in the 27th minute when Copenhagen squandered a golden opportunity.
A skilful flick by Viktor Claesson sent Lukas Lerager away inside the area, but the midfielder cut back and teed up youngster Roony Bardghji, who curled wide from 14 yards.
It should have resulted in the breakthrough and Copenhagen were indebted to goalkeeper Kamil Grabara on the half-hour.
Bayern full-back Konrad Laimer got to the byline and his cross was headed back across goal by Tel, but Muller’s close-range header was brilliantly clawed away by Grabara.
The half-time sentiments of Tuchel failed to have the desired effect initially with Diogo Goncalves curling wide in the 47th minute for Copenhagen.
A chance was fashioned for the hosts just past the hour mark when Alphonso Davies laid into the path of Tel, but he sliced off target under pressure from Rasmus Falk.
Tuchel had already seen enough and that miss proved Tel’s last involvement with Leroy Sane and Serge Gnabry sent on with 26 minutes left.
Copenhagen remained a threat with Neuer forced to parry wide an effort by substitute Elias Achouri before Kane did finally get a sight at goal.
Kane let fly from 22 yards but his firm drive was pushed over by Grabara in the 68th minute.
Grabara looked to have made another stop four minutes later from a Sane free-kick, but a goal kick was awarded and Bayern substitute goalkeeper Sven Ulreich was shown a yellow card by Frappart amid whistles from the Munich supporters.
More whistles occurred with 84 minutes on the clock when Muller went down twice in quick succession in the area and yet both hopeful penalty appeals were waved away.
There was still time for Neuer to show his class with a fine save to thwart a header by Elyounoussi before the follow-up shot by the ex-Celtic attacker was also blocked by the Bayern captain, with Frappart overturning the stoppage-time penalty given after Frans Kratzig’s pass hit Ankersen’s arm.
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