Bayern crush Hertha with second-half blitz
BERLIN, Jan 19 (Reuters) - Champions Bayern Munich scored four times in 24 minutes in the second half to crush hosts Hertha Berlin 4-0 on Sunday and move into second place as the Bundesliga resumed after the winter break.
Thomas Mueller stabbed in from close range on the hour for his third goal of the season, with Bayern upping the tempo after the break following a largely lacklustre first half.
Robert Lewandowski, back following groin surgery in December, bagged his 20th league goal of this season when the Polish striker sent keeper Rune Jarstein the wrong way to score with a 73rd-minute penalty.
Three minutes later Thiago Alcantara made it 3-0 with a superb strike and Ivan Perisic headed in at the far post in the 84th from a fine Mueller cross to complete their win and lift Bayern into second place on 36 points.
Leipzig are top on 40 after Saturday's 3-1 win over Union Berlin. Borussia Moenchengladbach dropped to third on 35 following Friday's 2-0 loss to Schalke 04.
(Reporting by Karolos Grohmann, editing by Ed Osmond)