Neuer questions Bayern's desire for DFB-Pokal progress after late escape

By Sports Desk October 30, 2019

Manuel Neuer was left wondering whether Bayern Munich really wanted to advance in the DFB-Pokal following Tuesday's narrow victory at second-tier Bochum.

Serge Gnabry and Thomas Muller scored in the final 10 minutes to seal a come-from-behind 2-1 win that spared the Bundesliga champions from embarrassment.

Bayern fell behind when Alphonso Davies turned a cross into his own net and the visitors needed almost 50 minutes to restore parity.

A poor first half forced coach Niko Kovac to call Robert Lewandowski from the bench and led captain Neuer to question the squad's desire.

"The way we played in the first half was really sad and disappointing," Neuer said.

"I don't know the reason, whether we were not there in our heads or we just didn't want to qualify. That's what it looked like anyway.

"It's important that everyone starts with themselves. We don't need to talk about individual players or the system or the coach.

"It's important for us as professionals to be able to look at ourselves in the mirror."

The victory was Bayern's third on the bounce in all competitions but continued a series of below-par showings against modest opposition.

Since losing at home to Hoffenheim, Kovac's men have drawn with Augsburg and scraped past Olympiacos, Union Berlin and Bochum.

Leon Goretzka diagnosed the problem as a lack of enjoyment.

"I think we need to get the fun back," he said after the second-round win over his former club.

"I talked about this in the dressing room. It was a night game and we should just go out and have fun. But that was missing.

"For sure it was a weak performance. I can't really remember any chances. It was a bad game from us."

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