After a truly inspiring performance in the 2012/2013 treble winning season, Thomas Müller was always going to have a tough billing to live up to. Filling in admirably when first Arjen Robben and then Toni Kroos succumbed to long term injury, the burden for maintaining attacking cohesion fell to him. He mastered those expectations to the offensive tune of 23 goals and 17 assists.
But could he face the transition to a new system under Pep Guardiola?
|Touches/90||Pass %||Back Zone Pass %||Forward Zone Pass %|
Under Pep Guardiola, Thomas Müller showed up big time, upping his goal tally to 26 on the season, to go with 15 assists in over 3500 minutes. Also, rather than spending the majority of his time at one position, Thomas Müller was Pep Guardiola's Swiss army knife, slotting in at left midfield, right midfield, in the center, and upfront in myriad tactical configurations that changed from game to game.
|Shots/90||KP+Assists/90||Duel %||Aerial Duel %|
While he may never have been the focal point of Bayern Munich's buildup and attacking play, Thomas Müller was the antithesis of flashy play. Running channels, opening spaces, and being the utter nuisance to opposing defenses that we've all come to love, his contributions to Bayern Munich's season can't be understated. But, in the same respect, that's Thomas Müller's biggest weakness. Against compact sides, where space is restricted, Thomas Müller is not the "creative" type who can find that elusive first goal, but after that first goal, when the game opens up, Thomas Müller is the type who will generate goals two through six, and he did so with aplomb this season.
At the tender age of 24, Thomas Müller has already accomplished more than probably any player his age has ever done. And he'll continue to do so for many more years for Bayern Munich, or if he doesn't, I'm going to cry big huge tears that turn the world into the story of Noah.