Lewandowski scored a hat trick in Byron’s victory.

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Berlin:

Robert Lewandowski hit a hat-trick to reach the 100th Champions League milestone on Tuesday when Bayern Munich punched their way to the last 16 with a 5-2 home win over Benfica.

At the Allianz Arena, Byron scored for Lewandowski, Serge Gunbury and Leroy Sen, while Benfica’s Morato and Darwin Nunez scored for the visitors.

Lewandowski, who also saved a penalty, has scored 81 goals and 100 appearances in the Champions League since his debut for former club Dortmund a decade ago.

“I never thought I would have so many goals,” Lewandowski told Amazon.

“I had a hard time getting the ball in the first 20 minutes, which makes it difficult for the striker to be patient.

“After the first round, it always gets a little easier.”

Byron’s fourth consecutive win in Europe guarantees them a place in the last 16 with two group games remaining as they lead the top six points in Group E.

It was Julian Nagelsman’s first game to return to the Bayern bench as head coach Koveid lost the last four games after a positive test of 19.

“Overall, it was an incredibly good game for us, better than the last few weeks,” said Naglesman, referring to last week’s 5-0 defeat in the German Cup at Mچnchengladbach.

“It’s good not to have to watch it on TV.

“We’ve qualified for the last 16, it’s a good first step. But then come the knockout games, you have to get back into your game.”

Byron had an initial fear when Manuel Neuer lost to Lucas Versimo Header, but the replay showed that Benfica’s captain was Pizzi offside.

Lewandowski took the lead for Byron when Kingsley Koman turned his marker Alejandro Gramaldo, then played a chip on the back post at 26 minutes where the Polish striker was waiting.

The second goal came six minutes later when Benjamin Poward picked up a defensive pass from Lewandowski to Gunbury, leaving behind visiting goalkeeper Odysseus Vlachodimos.

Even so, Bayern did not have things of their own.

Morato gave Benfica a lifeline before the break when he met Grimaldo’s cross at the far post.

It was Bayern’s first goal in four Champions League games this season.

After the replay, it appeared that Leon Goritzka’s shot was blocked by Versimo’s arm, Bayern were fined but Lewandowski hit a weak shot straight into Vlachodimos’ thankful arm as it was 2-1 at half-time.

Byron scored four minutes later in the second half when Sai scored his third goal, which was scored by winger Alfonso Davis on his birthday – 21 years after he was born in a refugee camp in Ghana.

Lewandowski scored his second goal as he rode a motorcycle through the area and shot home in the 61st minute.

Despite this, the host Costing was found guilty and when Marcel Sabitzer left the post, Benfica rushed to the counter and Darwin Nunes knocked it out 4-2 in 72 minutes.

However, it was Lewandowski’s night, who wrapped up his hat-trick with a deadly chip six minutes later after a pinpoint accurate long ball from Byron’s goalkeeper Neuer.





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