Robert Lewandowski broke the record for most league goals in a calendar year when Bayern Munich crushed Wolfsburg 4-0 on Friday to go into the winter break by nine points at the top of the standings.
Lewandowski ended the defeat three minutes from the end, to score in 43rd place for 2021 as Gerd Muller has scored 42 goals since 1972.
Thomas Muller – who has nothing to do with Gerd – celebrated his 400th appearance in the Bundesliga with a goal and assist in the victory.
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“I am very satisfied with the way we played,” Bayern coach Julian Nagelsmann said. “It was a little more difficult in the first half when Wolfsburg was a bit more disciplined. We started well but lost some possession.
“But we defended well and the second half was impressive, the way we pressed so hard. The result was well deserved.”
Muller opened his account after scoring the rebound in the seventh minute after goalkeeper Quinn Castells saved Serge Gnabry’s shot on his way.
Dayot Upamecano then crafted a clever chip to score his second goal in the 57th minute before Leroy Sane blasted a superb shot into the far top corner two minutes later to put the game on hold.
Lewandowski was desperate to end the year at a high level after losing the FIFA World Player of the Year award to Lionel Messi, but first hit the crossbar in the 66th minute and then was denied from close range by Castells with a fine piece of goalkeeping.
But he made no mistake from close range in the 87th minute to give Wolfsburg its fourth consecutive loss in the league and its seventh consecutive loss in all competitions.
Lewandowski has so far scored 19 league goals, more than two for the entire Wolfsburg team this season.
Wolves slipped to twelfth place, three points short of the relegation extension area.
Bayern, chasing the tenth league title in a row, has 43 points, while Borussia Dortmund is second with 34 points, and travels to Hertha Berlin on Saturday.
With 56 league goals halfway through, Bayern is also on track to break the record for most league goals in a Bundesliga season (101) set by Bayern in the 1971-72 season.
The Bundesliga will stop for three weeks and then resume on January 7.