MUNICH: Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting extended his rich scoring form for Bayern Munich as the German champion beat Inter Milan 2-0 to complete the Champions League group stage with a perfect record of six wins.
Both teams had already secured a spot in the last 16, with Inter finishing second in Group C behind Bayern. Choupo-Moting hit a rising shot into the top-left corner from outside the penalty area for Bayern's second goal, taking the Cameroon striker to seven goals in his last six games in all competitions. Choupo-Moting also had an overhead kick goal disallowed for offside shortly before.
Coach Julian Nagelsmann's decision to use the longtime backup as a starting striker has helped bring about a seven-game winning run for Bayern since mid-October and has given the team a focus in attack following Robert Lewandowski's departure to Barcelona at the end of last season.
Inter was aggrieved at referee Ivan Kruzliak's decision not to give a penalty early on when Sadio Mané blocked a shot with his hands in front of his face. After consulting a video replay, Kruzliak indicated that he decided against a penalty because Mané was acting instinctively to protect himself.
Benjamin Pavard opened the scoring for Bayern with a header when he was left in space in front of goal at a corner in the 32nd minute. That came just after Lautaro Martínez missed an excellent chance to give Inter the lead, sending the ball over the bar from close range as he stretched to meet a cross from Robin Gosens. After that, the closest Inter came to a goal was when Kristjan Asllani put the ball into the net from a clearly offside position at a free kick soon after the break.
With Bayern in full control of the game following Choupo-Moting's goal, Nagelsmann opted to give game time off the bench to two promising youngsters, 17-year-old striker Mathys Tel and 16-year-old midfielder Paul Wanner. Edin Džeko had a shot saved by Bayern goalkeeper Sven Ulreich in stoppage time.
Bayern is the only team this season to achieve six wins from six games in the group stage after the only other team to win all of its first five games, Napoli, was beaten 2-0 by Liverpool on Tuesday.
In the other group game, third-place Barcelona beat Viktoria Plzen 4-2.