For the last five years Bayern Munich has viewed its competition the same way Joey Chestnut views a hot dog: as something to be devoured as quickly and completely as possible.
Over that time Bayern has lost just 12 of 170 Bundesliga games, outscoring opponents by more than 52 goals a season. It won three domestic titles and a Champions League crown, a level of dominance unmatched in German soccer history. And it did so with a roster that read as much like a Hall of Fame ballot as a starting lineup.
But four games into this season that dynasty is beginning to show signs of crumbling, something even Saturday’s 4-0 demolition of Mainz can’t hide.
In recent weeks some of...