Germany's Bayern Munich had to rely on a pair of own goals against Cluj to maintain their perfect start in Group E of the UEFA Champions League
The 3-2 victory at the Allianz Arena gave last season's beaten finalists a firm grip over their section. However things got off to a rocky start for the German giants when Cluj captain Ricardo Cadu's headed the ball into the Bayern net after 27 minutes.
Cadu's night turned sour shortly after when he unluckily put the ball into his own net. Six minutes later, another Cluj mishap would see Cristian Panin score the second own-goal of the evening. It proved the decisive period on a night when Cluj otherwise matched their hosts. Mario Gomez added a third for Bayern after 77 minutes making Juan Emmanuel Culio's late strike a consolation goal for Cluj.
Bayern's win moved them up to nine points and, after Basle beat Roma 3-1 in tonight's other Group E game , gave them a six-point cushion over their rivals at the half-way stage.
Bayern spurned two set-piece opportunities before they were undone by the pin-point delivery of Cluj's much-travelled Italian midfielder Roberto De Zerbi. The 31-year-old should have already been the architect of his team's first goal, when Felice Piccolo ballooned his fizzing free-kick over from six yards, before the opener did come with 27 minutes played.
De Zerbi was felled by Anatoliy Tymoschuk 30 yards from goal and the Italian's resultant free-kick exposed the Bayern midfielder for a second time, as he failed to track Cadu's run to the back post where he powerfully headed his side ahead. The lead lasted only four minutes as Cadu unluckily diverted the ball into his own net after Kroos' centre struck him to leave Stancioiu wrong-footed.
Cluj were then behind six minutes later when they conceded a second own goal, although this time the mistake was preventable. Andreas Ottl swung a corner to the top of the six-yard box and Panin, who might have expected his goalkeeper to come and gather, saw the ball deflect off his midriff and into his goal.
It was a disheartening blow for the Romanians, but they almost drew level in injury time when Lacina Traore ran onto a through-ball and with just Hans-Jorg Butt to beat, fired against the post. Following that scare, Bayern pushed for a third goal after half-time with Thomas Muller and Kroos both shooting over from distance before Holger Badstuber's free-kick was parried to safety by Stancioiu.
Gomez, who scored a hat-trick in the weekend win over Hannover, eventually gave his side a two-goal cushion they would require when he scored from close range with 76 minutes played.
Culio gave his team brief hope when he scored from 12 yards with five minutes remaining, but Bayern held out for a third win in as many games.