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Five observations from Bayern Munich’s 3-1 win vs. Augsburg

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New pitch? No problem. Bayern took the game to the Bavarian rivals again with ease.

FC Augsburg v Bayern Muenchen - Bundesliga Photo by Daniel Kopatsch/Getty Images For MAN

Bayern Munich do not get to play the same opponent twice in a row very often, and they surely took advantage of the back-to-back games against Augsburg. The defending league champions handled their Bavarian rivals for a second time this week to maintain their lead atop the Bundesliga table. Here are some observations from Bayern’s 3-1 win in Augsburg.

1. Bayern beat Augsburg in pretty much the exact same way

Bayern got out to an early 2-0 lead in the first half, got a quality insurance goal in the second half, and let in a consolation goal against the run of play. Sound familiar? Ancelotti has not left too much to the imagination this season and his approach seems to be very direct. There is nothing wrong with consistency.

2. A team without Thomas Müller is looking pretty good

For the second-straight Bundesliga matchday, Müller was left on the bench and Douglas Costa started in his place. Last week it seemed to be simple rotation – understandable after a high-tension Champions League game – but this week it appeared more systematic. Douglas fits much better into Ancelotti’s 4-3-3 system better simply because he is a winger. But if Ancelotti doesn’t change the system to take advantage of Müller’s talents (like Pep Guardiola did), the German international could see his regular first team place go to someone else.

3. The midfield three is not going away soon, and it shouldn’t

It’s hard to argue with Ancelotti’s system when Bayern are defending the way they are. Arturo Vidal and Thiago Alcantara are taking a lot of pressure off of David Alaba and Philipp Lahm, which is allowing both to provide Bayern with more width. Vidal and Thiago also are very good at transitioning the play from defense to attack, which is why Bayern were able to get forward so well against Augsburg. But the game on Saturday also showed that Ancelotti’s tactics work best when the right players are on the field to execute them.

4. Augsburg’s best chances came from silly errors.

Well, except for one: Paul Verhaegh’s smash in the first half would have been spectacular if he had been able to beat Manuel Neuer. But Xabi Alonso’s inexcusable giveaway in Bayern’s half could have created a lot of problems for his team, and so could have the missed tackle from Mats Hummels on Ji Dong-Won in the second half. Absolutely chaotic defending lead to Augsburg’s consolation goal, which may have resulted in complacency late in the match. Bayern have not had too many complete performances this season, but there is certainly time for them to fix that.

5. Mats Hummels may be trying too hard

Hummels has always been an aggressive defender, but he has been burned several times this season when he doesn’t win the ball. A theory for his debilitating aggressiveness could be that he is pressing too much, trying to be the first to every ball rather than playing his position well. A big money move from Dortmund to Bayern could certainly do that, but if he wants to win the titles he could not in Dortmund, he may have to cool it a little.