Corentin Tolisso

AP Photo/Matthias Schrade

Bayern unhappy with opponents’ rough style in Bundesliga

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BERLIN (AP) Bayern Munich wants more protection from referees.

The defending champions lost French midfielder Corentin Tolisso and Brazilian defender Rafinha to injuries sustained in last weekend’s win over Bayer Leverkusen. Both club president Uli Hoeness and chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge have called for a reaction from the German soccer federation.

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“It can’t go on like this. Otherwise we won’t have any players after the 10th round or we won’t be able to get 11 players together,” Rummenigge said ahead of Saturday’s Bundesliga match against Schalke in Gelsenkirchen.

Tolisso was ruled out for several months after rupturing a cruciate ligament and the medial meniscus in his right knee, while Rafinha is out for several weeks with a partial tear of ligaments in his left ankle after a bad challenge from Karim Bellarabi, who was sent off.

Bellarabi, who apologized after the match, was subsequently banned for four games and fined 10,000 euros ($11,750).

After the game, Hoeness had called for Bellarabi to be banned for “three months – for stupidity.”

Bayern already lost French winger Kingsley Coman to injury in its first home game of the season, after which Rummenigge accused Hoffenheim of playing “football in a wild-west manner.”

Bayern coach Niko Kovac said his side was “fair game” for others to target with hard challenges.

It was different when Kovac was in charge of Eintracht Frankfurt from March 8, 2016, to June 30, 2018. No side committed more fouls per game (15.4) than Frankfurt in that time.

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Contrary to Bayern’s claims, both Kicker magazine and the Bild tabloid reported that promoted teams Nuremberg and Fortuna Duesseldorf, and Wolfsburg, all were fouled more the defending champions in the opening three games of the season.

Bayern’s 36 fouls is the same as Leipzig and Stuttgart, and its average of 12 per game is marginally below the average for last season.

Bayern’s players are more relaxed about the issue after winning their opening three league games and making winning starts in the German Cup and Champions League.

“I don’t think it’s so extreme,” Bayern midfielder Joshua Kimmich said.

On Saturday, the team can expect committed opponents again. Schalke, which finished runner-up last season, is looking for its first win after starting with three losses.

More AP Bundesliga coverage: https://apnews.com/tag/Bundesliga and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

Bundesliga: Bayern’s title march continues with 4-0 win (video)

Andreas Gebert/dpa via AP
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BERLIN (AP) Bayern Munich moved to a huge 20-point lead in the Bundesliga with only nine rounds left after a 4-0 win at Freiburg on Sunday, while Cologne’s slim hopes of survival took a hit.

Two goals in three minutes set Bayern on course for its 20th win in 25 games, leaving it just a matter of time before the Bavarian powerhouse wraps up its record-extending sixth consecutive title.

Jupp Heynckes’ side showed that last weekend’s draw at home to Hertha Berlin was only a temporary scare after a 15-game winning streak.

Thomas Mueller was at the heart of Bayern’s first goal after 24 minutes in which either side could have scored. The Bayern forward’s cross came back off Freiburg defender Caglar Soyuncu’s heel, and Mueller reacted quickly to send the ball back, where it ricocheted off Soyuncu and goalkeeper Alexander Schwolow to go in.

Corentin Tolisso then hammered a brilliant shot from around 30 meters (yards) inside the top right corner.

Sandro Wagner, playing in place of the rested Robert Lewandowski, killed any notion of a contest early in the second half after being set up by Mueller.

Mueller crowned his performance with the fourth goal — a half-volley to Joshua Kimmich’s corner at the near post — with just over 20 minutes remaining.

Cologne’s chances of an unlikely escape from relegation were hit as Stuttgart came from behind to win 3-2 on an afternoon to forget for goalkeeper Timo Horn.

Veteran striker Claudio Pizarro fired Cologne into an early lead and his side went on to dominate the first half.

Yuya Osako, who had sent Pizarro through, thought he’d scored himself toward the end of the half after Vincent Koziello managed to get the ball from goalkeeper Ron-Robert Zieler. But the video referee concluded the Hannover `keeper had the ball under control and the goal was disallowed.

It went from bad to worse for Cologne just before the break. Mario Gomez equalized against the run of play, and then scored again when Horn let his harmless shot slip through his arms. Stuttgart forward Daniel Ginczek consoled the Cologne `keeper.

“I’m not making any excuses. It’s a ball that a goalkeeper should get. It’s brutal, especially after such a good first half,” Horn said.

Andreas Beck made it 3-1 early in the second half, shooting inside the far post from a difficult angle, when again Horn looked far from impressive.

Cologne struggled to create chances afterward as Stuttgart sat back and defended, though Milos Jojic got the home fans going again when he scored late with a fine free kick.

Stuttgart held on, however, to climb to ninth with its fourth successive win under new coach Tayfun Korkut, who is unbeaten in five.

Home fans shouted Horn’s name after the game to show their support.

“That’s a huge gesture from the fans and one I’m grateful for,” the goalkeeper said.

Cologne remains bottom with just four wins, eight points from safety.

Bundesliga wrap: Bayern, BVB level on points; USMNT’s Johnson scores

Marius Becker/dpa via AP
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Borussia Dortmund’s dominant start to the season is no more, and new Bayern Munich boss Jupp Heynckes has his side very much in the race for yet another Bundesliga crown.

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Hamburg 0-1 Bayern Munich

Strikers Bobby Wood (Hamburg) and Robert Lewandowski (Bayern) were frustrated, combining for just 47 touches, and it took a fittingly messy goal to separate the two. It came from French midfielder Corentin Tolisso and pulled Bayern level with leaders BVB on points, three goals back in differential.

Eintracht Frankfurt 2-2 Borussia Dortmund

BVB is, quite officially, in a bit of a funk. Nuri Sahin and Marvin Philipp gave the visitors a 2-0 lead, but Eintracht sprung for goals in the 64th and 68th minutes to deny the leaders more than a point. Christian Pulisic ran his socks off, as usual, with more than 11km covered, but will not look back on his 90 minutes fondly. It happens.

Borussia Monchengladbach 1-5 Bayer Leverkusen

American left winger Fabian Johnson buried a seventh minute goal… then watched the visitors put five of their six shots on target home for a gnarly home loss.

Elsewhere
Schalke 2-0 Mainz — Friday
RB Leipzig 1-0 Stuttgart
Augsburg 1-2 Hannover 96
Koln vs. Werder Bremen — 7:30 a.m. ET Sunday
Freiburg vs. Hertha Berlin — 9:30 a.m. ET Sunday
Wolfsburg vs. Hoffenheim — Noon ET Sunday

STANDINGS

Team GP W D L GF GA GD Home Away PTS
 Borussia Dortmund 9 6 2 1 25 7 18 3-0-1 3-2-0 20
 Bayern Munich 9 6 2 1 22 7 15 3-1-0 3-1-1 20
 RB Leipzig 9 6 1 2 16 10 6 3-1-0 3-0-2 19
 FC Schalke 04 9 5 1 3 12 9 3 3-1-1 2-0-2 16
 1899 Hoffenheim 8 4 3 1 15 10 5 3-2-0 1-1-1 15
 Hannover 96 9 4 3 2 10 7 3 2-1-1 2-2-1 15
 Eintracht Frankfurt 9 4 2 3 10 9 1 1-1-2 3-1-1 14
 Mönchengladbach 9 4 2 3 13 17 -4 3-0-2 1-2-1 14
 Bayer Leverkusen 9 3 3 3 20 14 6 2-2-0 1-1-3 12
 FC Augsburg 9 3 3 3 12 10 2 2-1-2 1-2-1 12
 FSV Mainz 05 9 3 1 5 10 15 -5 3-0-2 0-1-3 10
 VfB Stuttgart 9 3 1 5 6 11 -5 3-1-0 0-0-5 10
 Hertha BSC Berlin 8 2 3 3 8 10 -2 2-2-1 0-1-2 9
 VfL Wolfsburg 8 1 5 2 8 11 -3 0-3-1 1-2-1 8
 Hamburger SV 9 2 1 6 6 15 -9 1-1-3 1-0-3 7
 SC Freiburg 8 1 4 3 5 16 -11 1-3-0 0-1-3 7
 Werder Bremen 8 0 4 4 3 9 -6 0-1-3 0-3-1 4
 1. FC Köln 8 0 1 7 3 17 -14 0-0-3 0-1-4 1

Bayern signs Corentin Tolisso in Bundesliga record transfer

Dan Mullan/Getty Images
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MUNICH (AP) Bayern Munich signed French midfielder Corentin Tolisso for a Bundesliga-record of at least 41.5 million euros ($46.8 million) from Lyon on Wednesday.

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The 22-year-old Tolisso signed a five-year deal, Bayern said, while Lyon announced the transfer fee and said that add-ons could see it increase by another 6 million euros ($6.8 million).

“”I had a wonderful time at Lyon, and I’m very thankful for that. Now I’m really pleased to be at one of the best clubs in Europe,” Tolisso said.

Tolisso, who joined Lyon as a 13-year-old, made his debut with the senior team in 2013 and went on to play 160 games, including 32 in the Champions League and Europa League, contributing 29 goals. He was reportedly a target for Chelsea.

“We’re really pleased we’ve been able to sign such a young and interesting player ahead of stiff competition from abroad. Corentin Tolisso was (coach) Carlo Ancelotti’s wish for our midfield,” Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge said.

Tolisso, a versatile midfielder who has made one appearance for France, will hope to fill the void left by Xabi Alonso’s retirement. Midfielder Joshua Kimmich will likely go back to fill in for the retired Philipp Lahm, and Javi Martinez, also initially a midfielder, will stay in defense.

“Tolisso is a pretty quick, technically good player,” said Rummenigge, who compared the player to Martinez when he joined. “He’s also a threat in front of goal and scored 14 times last season, as well as providing a lot of assists. He’s a player that the FC Bayern fans can look forward to.”

Tolisso is Bayern’s fourth recruit of the offseason after Sunday’s signing of forward Serge Gnabry from Werder Bremen for a reported 8 million euros ($9 million), and the previously agreed signings of defenders Sebastian Rudy and Niklas Suele from Hoffenheim.

“I think they’re really interesting young players for Germany, and now we also have Tolisso, who is already a France international,” Rummenigge said. “I think these four players add real quality to the squad, as well as freshening it up a bit.”

Bayern won the Bundesliga for a record-extending fifth straight year last season.