It could have been worse. Bayern could have moved out of second gear.
While English clubs haggle over the kind of quality needed to compete at this level, Bayern are – as the kids say – moving mad.
Top of the Bundesliga with quality coming out of their ears, they are just too good for the likes of Chelsea and Spurs. Too quick, too clinical, too creative – Ross Barkley against Thiago Alcantara was like Barney the dinosaur against Godzilla – and just too much nous all over the park.
When Kingsley Coman tweaked his hamstring in the second half, Bayern sent on Coutinho. When Robert Lewandowski made it 3-0 the strike was his 39th of the season – his 64th in the Champions League . Canadian left-back Alphonso Davies reminded you of a classic thoroughbred galloping past selling platers as he scorched down the wing for the assist.
Yes, there have been some sensational comebacks in the Champions League in recent seasons. But you and I both know that Chelsea ain’t coming back from this at the Allianz Arena in three weeks time. Not with Jorginho suspended, Marcos Alonso banned, N’golo Kante unlikely to be back and Bayern even stronger at home than they are on the road.
Spurs – crushed 7-2 at home in October – could have warned Chelsea all about the dangers of trying to trade punches with the German champions with a dodgy defence.
At times this mismatch reminded you of Deontay Wilder walking into Tyson Fury ’s right hand last weekend. Wilder might be keen to sack Mark Breland, the man who threw in the towel to save him from Fury’s onslaught but had the experienced trainer been here at Stamford Bridge he’d have done the same for Chelsea. Bayern were so devastating you could be forgiven for watching this through your fingers in the second half.
It is frightening to think the Chelsea top brass really believed they could compete with Hansi Flick’s side having refused to give in to Frank Lampard’s impassioned pleas for more quality during the January transfer window.
The rookie Blues boss wanted Dries Mertens from Napoli. Chelsea wouldn’t offer enough to tempt the Italian club into selling. Mertens’ goal against Barcelona over in Naples equalled Marek Hamšík’s record for most goals scored for the club in their history.
Chelsea also need another left-back, right winger and midfielder – and to finish in the top four to ensure they remain a big draw.
Fair play to the Blues’ hierarchy, they want to wait until the summer to perform the surgery they feel will revamp their side.
In the meantime, however, they will need to leave the Champions League to the big boys.