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Five Match Observations from Bayern Munich's poor performance against Eintracht Frankfurt

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Both Bayern and Frankfurt can consider themselves lucky to walk away with a point.

Eintracht Frankfurt v Bayern Muenchen - Bundesliga Photo by Lars Baron/Bongarts/Getty Images

Not a great first half

Bayern played relatively well early on, and went ahead deservingly after a goal from Arjen Robben. But the good play ended there, at least for the first half. Frankfurt’s pressing disrupted Bayerns build-up play for long stretches and allowed them to win possession in dangerous areas on multiple occasions. That coupled with Bayern’s lack of determination and sloppy passing should have seen Frankfurt go into the break with a lead, but the post and a poor, and a last second save meant that Szabolcs Husztis goal was all they were going to get in the first half.

Xabi Alonso off

It’s rare to see a player with Xabi Alonso's experience and quality get subbed off after just 45 minutes, but that’s exactly what happened today. It was quite apparent that Bayern were losing the midefield battle in the first half, and that a change needed to be made.

Things got better after Renato Sanches was introduced for Alonso, with Thiago dropping back into Alonso’s spot to dictate play from the back. Bayern were quickly able to create more chances, and Sanches provided more cover at the back, especially on the left side, with his quickness and strength.

Frankfurt’s pressing

Niko Kovac’s men really put a lot of pressure on the Bavarians throughout the first half, leading to a multitude of chances. Again, they were unlucky not to be ahead by two, maybe even three, goals. They never allowed Bayern to set up shop in their half, and did a good job of taking Xabi Alonso out of the game early, which resulted in the Spaniard being subbed off at the half.

Teams who don’t press week in, week out, usually have a hard time keeping it up for a full 90 minutes, and that’s exactly what happened to Frankfurt today. After about 55 minutes, Frankfurt started to allow Bayern to build up slowly from the back, and Carlo Ancelotti’s men used the space to create high level chances early on in the half.

Tom Starke takes one for the team

Moving to a new country with new people and a new language is hard for anyone, and twice as hard if you’re only 19 years old. So when Renato Sanches got into an altercation today with Frankfurt goal scorer Szabolcs Husztis, it was great to see Tom Starke come to the defense of Portugese almost immediately. Starke was sent off for his action, and while it may be very incosequential to Bayern, it was probably significant for Sanches.

The 19-year-old hasn’t exactly gotten off to the best start, with an injury and some poor performances early on causing many people to recognize the need to bring the youngster along slowly. In a sea of unfamiliarity, not being able to do the one thing he knew how to do so well was likely especially hard for him mentally. Just knowing his teammates have his back likely means a great deal to him.

Carlo Ancelotti has his work cut out for him

Bayern did not look good today. Defensively and in the midfield they looked overmatched. Especially the flanks looked vulnerable, with Alaba having a tough time covering Timothy Chandler, who was directly responsible for Frankfurt’s second goal and many more quality chances.

The midfield looked sloppy and uninspired today, and while they didn’t have Arturo Vidal running around like a maniac, Joshua Kimmich is still a high quality player that should slot in just fine for the Chilean. Bayern under Guardiola took pride in dominating the midfield and establishing control of matches, and today looked the opposite of that. We were all aware that Ancelotti’s style of play would be more vertical and direct instead of side-to-side, but today’s performance looked more hectic than direct, if anything.