Freiburg knocks Bayern out of German Cup with late penalty

Bayern's Joshua Kimmich, right, Sadio Mane, left, and Matthijs de Ligt walk along the pitch at the end of the Germany Cup quarter final match between Bayern Munich and SC Freiburg at the Allianz Arena stadium in Munich, Germany, Tuesday, April 4, 2023. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader)

Freiburg forward Lucas Höler scored a last-minute penalty to knock Bayern Munich out of the German Cup on Tuesday.

Höler struck his effort in under the crossbar in the fifth minute of injury time to send Freiburg into the semifinals. The modest club from the southwest of Germany reached the final last year.

The spot kick was awarded for a handball by Bayern substitute Jamal Musiala as he blocked Höler’s attempt at goal. The ball hit both of Musiala’s arms, bouncing from one to the other.

Bayern was bidding to win the competition for the first time in three years after embarrassing exits in the last two seasons. Borussia Mönchengladbach routed Bayern 5-0 in the second round last season and Holsten Kiel knocked the Bavarian powerhouse out at the same stage the season before.

“You’re now standing there with this pile of broken glass and you know it’s over again this year in the German Cup,” Bayern veteran Thomas Müller said. “Of course it scratches at the sense of pride.”

It was Thomas Tuchel’s first loss as Bayern coach in his second game since taking over from the fired Julian Nagelsmann.


“I don’t know if it was deserved, but it doesn’t play any role,” a visibly upset Tuchel told Sky TV afterward. “It’s quite bitter because we cannot correct it. To lose a knockout game is not good, it will preoccupy us for some time.”

Tuchel’s team next faces Freiburg away in the Bundesliga, before visiting Manchester City for the first leg of their Champions League quarterfinal.

Dayot Upamecano opened the scoring Tuesday with a header to Joshua Kimmich’s corner in the 20th, though the visitors complained that the Bayern defender fouled Maximilian Eggestein to reach the ball. TV replays showed Upamecano had two hands on the Freiburg defender’s shoulders as he rose to head the ball past Mark Flekken.

Nicolas Höfler equalized seven minutes later with a strike from distance inside the right post, set up by Kingsley Coman’s attempted clearance.

Bayern went on to create more chances — Benjamin Pavard struck the crossbar with a header in the second half — and Tuchel brought on attacking players Musiala and Serge Gnabry with just over 25 minutes of normal time remaining.

Earlier, Eintracht Frankfurt snapped a seven-game run without a win across all competitions by beating Union Berlin 2-0 at home.