Jersey Swap: Leon Goretzka
The best player on the field for Schalke was Leon Goretzka. He bossed the midfield for long stretches of the match, and it wasn’t until Bayern’s late second half reinforcements that his hold on the match began to wane. Goretzka has the opportunity to really make Schalke a force in the Bundesliga starting with a dominating midfield.
Tip Of The Cap: Manuel Neuer
When you need a goalkeeper to win one game for you, the man you turn to is Manuel Neuer. The Bayern Munich goalkeeper needed to come up big tonight on one occasion, and he knocked it out of the park. In the second half, with Klaas-Jan Huntelaar dribbling up the field, Neuer came off his line a bit as he began to cut down his angle. Then, Huntelaar surprised everyone by ripping a shot from distance. Neuer, dove to his left, getting his fingertips to the ball. It would smash off of the crossbar and stay out of the goal. That’s all it took for Neuer to make his stamp on this game. Marvelous.
Golf Clap: Joshua Kimmich
It’s been quite the week for Joshua Kimmich. Just days after scoring his first ever goal for Germany, the young midfielder/defender was at it again, this time for Bayern Munich. Both goals were similar in their appearance, with Kimmich streaking into the penalty area and finishing a nice pass from a teammate. Yes, we’re only two games into the Bundesliga season, but when do we start questioning whether or not Kimmich should be a starter on this team? And, who does he bump to the bench?
Standing Ovation: Javi Martinez
It was certainly a tale of two halves for Javi Martinez. Throughout the first half, he resembled Bambi on ice with his near-terrified play with the ball at his feet. Then, halftime happened, and a new man stepped onto the field. He and Hummels partnered extremely well throughout the second half to deny Schalke’s opportunities in front of goal. Then, THAT pass happened to unlock the Schalke defense. Goodness.
Meister Of The Match: Robert Lewandowski
With a goal and an assist, it was hard to give this award to anyone except Robert Lewandowski. Yes, he probably should have scored two or three more goals in the match, but that can be forgiven on this day. Lewandowski finally broke the deadlock with less than 10 minutes left in the match when he flawlessly received a difficult pass from Javi Martinez and smashed the ball past Ralf Fährmann for the goal. Then, in stoppage time, Lewandowski led the fast break counter and provided the pass to Joshua Kimmich for the cool finish to put the match out of reach. That’s four league goals in two games for Lewandowski. Look out, world.