2017/2018 German Bundesliga
  • Arturo Vidal (20')

Bayern academy coach Starke keeps clean sheet in win at Frankfurt

Simon Hofmann/Getty Images

Bayern Munich shrugged off a goalkeeping crisis to extend their lead at the top of the Bundesliga to eight points with a 1-0 win over Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday.

Arturo Vidal's 20th-minute header was enough for Bayern to take the win, but they can be just as happy with the clean sheet under the circumstances.

With number one Manuel Neuer and reserve Sven Ulreich sidelined, reserve Sven Ulreich was slated to start the match but was injured in the warm-up.

That brought the 36-year-old Tom Starke, the club's academy goalkeeper coordinator who has come out of retirement amid the injury crisis, into the starting line-up for a milestone he had given up on reaching -- his 100th Bundesliga appearance.

It was largely a quiet one for Starke as Bayern kept Frankfurt in check, and it could have been worse for the hosts who might have finished with 10 men.

Marius Wolf was initially shown a straight red card for a foul on James Rodriguez in the 72nd minute, but was relieved to have that downgraded to yellow after a video review.

Vidal, Thomas Muller, Jerome Boateng and Javi Martinez were all restored to Bayern's starting line-up after questions were asked of Jupp Heynckes team selection for the 3-1 Champions League win over Paris St Germain.

But even with the quartet back it was a subdued start from Bayern, who did not have a sight of goal until midway through the first half, when Vidal's shot from distance was deflected wide for a corner.

But it was from that corner they took the lead as Vidal headed home -- his fourth goal in as many games -- after Joshua Kimmich sent the ball back into the box.

Ante Rebic tried to reply quickly for Eintracht but saw his close-range effort saved by Starke -- a rare moment of action for the veteran.

Having been so quiet for so long, Bayen created further chances to add to their lead, with Kingsley Coman firing wide before Martinez's shot was charged down.

The teams traded blows at the start of the second half but it was Eintracht who had the best chance when Sebastien Haller headed wide from a good position in the 64th minute.

Kevin-Prince Boateng blazed over in the 81st minute as Frankfurt struggled to test the veteran Starke

It was a seventh win in eight league games for Bayern, and saw them push further clear at the top of the table as closest challengers RB Leipzig were held 2-2 at home by Mainz.