FC Rostov vs FC Bayern München – The Miracle on the Don

FC Rostov vs FC Bayern München – The Miracle on the Don

  • Holger Badstuber returns for Bayern München.
  • Rostov effectively used the 3-5-2 formation to break down Bayern.
  • Sardar Azmoun continues to impress in the Champions League.

Rostov have made a major step towards the round of 32 of the Europa League by gaining a sensational result against Bayern München on matchday 5 of the UEFA Champions League.  

FC Rostov vs FC Bayern München 3-2

Goals: 0-1 Douglas Costa (35’) 1-1 Azmoun (45’) 2-1 Poloz (48’) 2-2 Bernat (52) 3-2 (67’)

FC Bayern München applied pressure from the get go, but like Borussia Dortmund on the weekend, Rostov used the 3-5-2 formation to break down Bayern’s attacks, and quickly sprung on the counter causing all sorts of problems for Bayern’s back four. Indeed it was Rostov with the biggest chances in the first interval, Aleksandr Erokhin managed to head a ball passed Sven Ulreich, who was stuck in no-men’s land after a mix up in Bayern’s defence, but Juan Bernat did well to storm back, and clear the ball off the line, shortly after Sardar Azmoun was stopped by Ulreich on a breakaway. Rostov had the early chances, but it was Bayern who scored first, as Douglas Costa pounced on a rebound to score with a thundering shot from 10 yards out. But Rostov struck back when Azmoun showed why he is in the scout books of both Borussia Dortmund and Liverpool FC, by scoring on a wonderful breakaway move that saw Ulreich scrambling.


Early in the second interval Philipp Lahm almost got his first ever Champions League goal when he connected well with Bernat’s cross, but his header went wide of the goal. On the other side Jérôme Boateng fouled Christian Noboa in the box in what appeared to be a soft decision, but Dmitry Poloz showed no nerves, as he stepped up to convert the penalty. Bayern were only shocked for a moment with Bernat converting a close range effort just moments after the penalty to level the score line. Christian Noboa, however, once again got Rostov ahead when he curled a wonderful freekick passed the outstretched Sven Ulreich. Rostov then did well to weather Bayern München’s attacking storm to secure a famous victory.

FC Rostov vs FC Bayern München – Man of the Match

With all the attention on the young Iranian forward Sardar Azmoun Dmitry Poloz is a bit of an unsung hero for FC Rostov. The Russian forward gave the assist to Azmoun’s goal in the first half, and then calmly converted a penalty in the second half. His vision, and intelligent play was the foundation for all of Rostov’s attacking plays throughout the game.

FC Rostov vs FC Bayern München – Talking Point

On of the major talking points in this weeks Futbolgrad Podcast was the fact that Borussia Dortmund applied the 3-5-2 formation against Bayern München last Saturday. Borussia also used physical play to break down Bayern’s play in what was extremely uncharacteristic for Thomas Tuchel’s tactical philosophy. Rostov, however, have used this formation with great effect last season breaking down teams in the Russian Football Premier League, with more talent then they had to disposal, on a regular basis. Now for the first time this has also worked in the Champions League. With Dortmund and Rostov securing positive results against Bayern in the matter of just a few days the question has to be asked whether the 3-5-2 formation, combined with physical play, is the solution to Bayern München’s tactical code?

FC Rostov vs FC Bayern München – Match Stats

  • Badstuber with his first start in a competitive game in 287 days.
  • Bayern have won their five previous games in the Champions League against Russian opponents (15-1 goals).
  • This is Bayern’s first defeat in Russia since losing 4-0 on May 1 2008 against Zenit Saint Petersburg in the semi-final of the UEFA Cup.
  • Douglas Costa’s goal was Bayern München’s 400th goal in the Champions League.


Dzhanaev – Mevlja, Cesar Navas, Granat – Kalachev (Terentyev 86’), Kudryashov – Erokhin, Gatcan ©, Noboa – Azmoun (Grigoryev 82’), Poloz (Saeid 92’)

Coach: Ivan Daniliants

Ulreich – Rafinha, Boateng (Hummels 57’), Badstuber, Juan Bernat – Lahm © – Renato Sanches (Müller 72’), Thiago – Douglas Costa, Ribery – Lewandowski

Coach: Carlo Ancelotti

By Manuel Veth –