MUNICH, Germany (Shauntv) Bayern Munich’s Philippe Coutinho scored a hat-trick and Robert Lewandowski added two more goals as the champions demolished Werder Bremen 6-1 on Saturday to impressively bounce back from two straight league defeats.
The Bavarians, missing several players through injury, climbed to fourth place on 27 points, four behind leaders Borussia Moenchengladbach who visit VfL Wolfsburg on Sunday.
Borussia Dortmund stayed two points ahead of Bayern in third after a 4-0 win at Mainz 05 but Bayer Leverkusen missed a chance to move into the top four after suffering a shock 2-0 defeat at strugglers Cologne and instead dropped to seventh on 25.
Bayern’s man-of-the-match Coutinho, who also helped set up two more goals, delivered at just the right time with the Bavarians, struggling to find their rhythm under interim coach Hansi Flick, was at risk of losing touch with the top spots.
The Brazilian forward, brought in on loan from Barcelona this season, scored his first Bundesliga treble with Bayern playing a dominant second half.
However, they fell behind in the 24th minute to a Milot Rashica goal after again missing golden chances, including by top scorer Lewandowski, as had been the case in recent weeks.
But their wastefulness was not punished this time as goals from Coutinho in the 45th minute, and Lewandowski in first-half stoppage time turned the game for the hosts.
Brazilian Coutinho then chipped a superb David Alaba pass over Bremen keeper Jiri Pavlenka for their third goal in the 63rd as Bayern completely bossed the game following the break.
Poland forward Lewandowski added a fifth after 72 minutes and Thomas Mueller also scored before Coutinho rounded off a fine performance with another goal to complete his hat-trick