European roundup: Bayern crush Wolfsburg; Inter stretch lead at top

Thomas Müller celebrated his 400th Bundesliga appearance with a goal and an assist as Bayern Munich crushed Wolfsburg 4-0 to go into the winter break with a nine-point lead at the top of the standings.

Robert Lewandowski also broke the record for most league goals in a calendar year three minutes from the end, the top scorer volleying in his 43rd for 2021 to better Gerd Müller’s 42-goal run from 1972.

Müller opened their account, tapping in on the rebound in the seventh minute after keeper Koen Casteels had palmed a Serge Gnabry shot into his path.

He then set up Dayot Upamecano with a clever chip to head in their second goal in the 57th minute before Leroy Sané curled a superb shot into the top far corner two minutes later to put the game to bed.

Lewandowski was desperate to end the year on a high after missing out on the Ballon d’Or award to Lionel Messi but first fired over the bar in the 66th minute and was then denied at point-blank range by Casteels with a superb piece of goalkeeping.

But he did not miss from close range three minutes from time to hand toothless Wolfsburg their fourth consecutive league loss and their seventh straight defeat in all competitions. They dropped to 12th place, three points above the relegation play-off spot.

Bayern, chasing a record-extending 10th straight league crown, are on 43 points, with Borussia Dortmund, in second place on 34, travelling to Hertha Berlin on Saturday.

The Bundesliga will break for three weeks and then resume on 7 January.

In Serie A Internazionale notched a sixth consecutive victory by thrashing bottom side Salernitana 5-0 on Friday to stretch their lead at the top to four points.

Ivan Perisic headed in the opener before Denzel Dumfries smashed in a second before the break, marking the first time in Inter’s history that they have reached 100 Serie A goals in a single calendar year.

Alexis Sánchez fired in a third before substitutes Lautaro Martínez and Roberto Gagliardini completed the rout to leave the hosts bottom of the table with eight points.

Inter are top with 43 points, four clear of Milan in second, who play Napoli on Sunday evening. Lazio moved level on points with Juventus after beating Genoa 3-1 in Rome.