Bayern knocked out by Saarbruecken sucker punch
Bayern Munich crashed out of the German Cup in the second round for the third time in four years after a remarkable 2-1 loss at third-division Saarbruecken on Wednesday, thanks to a last-minute winner from Marcel Gaus.
With the scores locked at 1-1 and the match looking destined for extra time, defender Gaus netted in the sixth minute of injury time to grab his team a famous victory.
"When a first-division team like Bayern comes to Saarbruecken and loses, then we did something wrong," veteran Thomas Mueller told ARD after the match.
Bayern was beaten by Holstein Kiel on penalties at the same stage three years ago, then thrashed 5-0 by Borussia Moenchengladbach in round two in 2021.
The record 20-time winner lost in the quarterfinals at home to Freiburg last season.
"There could be 100 explanations or maybe none at all. We had injuries, but some will say we should win anyway," Bayern coach Thomas Tuchel said.
"Incredibly proud" home coach Rudiger Ziehl said he had told his players that Thursday's training session was now "voluntary"
"If we don't celebrate today, then we can never celebrate."
Bayern, who travels to Bundesliga rival Borussia Dortmund on Saturday, lost central defender Matthijs de Ligt to a potentially serious knee injury early in the match, leaving the side with only one fit centerback.
Six-time Cup winner Mueller looked to have Bayern on the right track for a routine victory at its less-fancied opponent with his 16th minute strike bulging the net, before De Ligt injured his knee in a tussle soon after and signaled immediately to the bench.
The injury forced midfielder Joshua Kimmich into defense and appeared to put Bayern on the back foot against a resurgent Saarbruecken.
The hosts struck next, with Patrick Sontheimer tapping in a pass from Lukas Boeder after Saarbruecken pressed midfielder Frans Kratzig into a mistake.
Tuchel brought on the cavalry, including Kingsley Coman, Jamal Musiala and Serge Gnabry, but star striker Harry Kane stayed on the bench ahead of Saturday's crunch match with Dortmund.
With the England captain warming up ahead of what looked like certain extra time, veteran defender Gaus popped up with a low, fizzing strike in the dying seconds of the match — a moment that will go down in Saarbruecken history.
Dortmund into last 16
Earlier on Wednesday, a strike from Marco Reus gave Borussia Dortmund a 1-0 home win over Hoffenheim.
Teenagers Jamie Bynoe-Gittens and Youssoufa Moukoko were given rare starts as coach Edin Terzic shuffled his deck before Bayern's visit, but it was veteran forward Reus who gave Dortmund the lead late in the opening half.
Bynoe-Gittens dribbled down the left flank and shaped to shoot before finding Reus who looped in a one-touch finish to score his 165th goal for the club, giving Dortmund a deserved half-time lead.
The host spurned chances, but Hoffenheim posed little danger and was reduced to 10 men in injury time when former Liverpool defender Ozan Kabak saw red.
Dortmund sporting director Sebastian Kehl, who won the German Cup once during his 13-year career at the club, said: "Against a team that has won all of their away games, I thought we did very, very well."
Bundesliga leader Bayer Leverkusen scored three goals in the final five minutes of it's match at third-tier Sandhausen to win 5-2.
Argentinian World Cup winner Exequiel Palacios gave Leverkusen an early lead from the spot after Amine Adli was brought down in the box.
Sandhausen leveled twice early in the second half, Christoph Ehlich and Yassin Ben Balla scoring either side of a Jonathan Tah goal for the visitors.
Leverkusen forward Adam Hlozek scored in the 85th minute to give the visitors the lead, before Adli added two of his own to add gloss to a nervous victory.
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