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Bayern Munich boss Tuchel: Bundesliga race ‘obviously’ over

Bayern Munich manager Thomas Tuchel said the Bundesliga title race was “obviously” over after his team's defeat to Borussia Dortmund on Saturday left them 13 points behind leaders Bayer Leverkusen on seven. remaining matches.

Dortmund defeated Bayern 2-0 away in The classic to leave Leverkusen unbeaten just three wins away from winning the Bundesliga for the first time.

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Asked if the title race was already over, Tuchel, who will leave at the end of the season, told Sky Sport Germany: “Obviously, yes.

“After today's match it is no longer necessary to count the points. How many are there now? Congratulations to Leverkusen.

“We are very disappointed because we feel that we did not bring the passion necessary to win the game. It was very little on our part in the basics.”

Karim Adeyemi and Julian Ryerson scored in each half for Dortmund's first league victory against Bayern in 10 years.

Bayern, the 11-time defending champion, realized it will likely have to win the Champions League to avoid its first trophyless season since 2012.

Bayern will face Arsenal in the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final on April 9.

If Leverkusen win the title, it will be the first time since Dortmund won back-to-back titles in 2011 and 2012 that a team other than Bayern has won it.

Bayern became the first club to win four Bundesliga titles in a row in 2016 and the Bavarian powerhouses extended their record to 11 by winning every season since.

But Tuchel's side have dropped points in eight of their 27 league games this season. Leverkusen has won all of its games except four draws and already has more points (73) than Bayern had when they won the title last year.

Leverkusen only came close to winning it, finishing runners-up in 2011, 2002, 2000, 1999 and 1997. Leverkusen also lost the German Cup and Champions League finals in 2002.

Leverkusen narrowly avoided their first defeat of the season on Saturday when Robert Andrich and Patrick Schick scored late to beat Hoffenheim 2-1.

Leverkusen were nearing the end of their 38-game unbeaten run in Germany in their first game since coach Xabi Alonso confirmed he would stay at the club, when Andrich equalized in the 88th minute and Schick scored the winner in the first minute. of the injury time.

“Every game is a great challenge for us,” Alonso said. “We were lucky but we showed a very good mentality to move forward, to continue believing. We had the opportunity to win like against Qarabag. [in the Europa League] and we did it.

“Having this faith, having a winning mentality, is something that is created and we have created it this season.”

Information from Reuters and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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