Buried on the bench due to a deep Bayern Munich midfield, Pierre-Emile Højbjerg had a marvelous time away from home. He shined the brightest of the players sent on loan, providing Markus Weinzierl the punch he needed to get Augsburg into Europe. He is on the verge of establishing himself as a pro, but he may need to do a tad more work in order to become a Bayern regular.
His Season Performance
As one would expect from a player sent out on loan in January, Højbjerg's season had two very different halves. Pep Guardiola surely saw his potential, but ultimately did not trust him enough to rely on him consistently when the midfield numbers began to dwindle. Højbjerg did get his chance against Hamburg in late September, Guardiola trying to give Xabi Alonso a rest, but his performance was not up to snuff. He then only got a chance to play in matches with little meaning.
Starved of first team minutes, Højbjerg agreed to a move to Augsburg. Weinzierl granted him minutes right away, and Højbjerg delivered what the third-year manager was looking for. He had a match-winning assist in his debut, and had a match-winning wonder-strike in his finale. He played in a few different positions for Weinzierl, but he was essentially the same box-to-box player no matter where he lined up. He ended up with two goals and three assists on the season, all of which came on loan.
Next Season Prospects
The course of Højbjerg's next season will depend entirely on where he plays. Augsburg have already voiced their desire to extend his loan for another season, but Bayern have yet to indulge on that wish. Should Bastian Schweinsteiger depart, his role at Bayern could become much more clear, but Højbjerg would still have to compete with soon-to-arrive Joshua Kimmich and Guardiola favorite Sebastian Rode. He still has strides to make as a defender and a passer before he can fully break into a top European side, but his raw skills and spacial awareness are rounding out, poising him for a breakout in the near future.