Kingsely Coman was, without a doubt, Bayern Munich's best player on the pitch during the 3-1 win over Hannover 96 at the weekend. A goal, an assist, and winning a penalty that lead to Bayern's third and final goal capped off one of Coman's strongest performances of the season. He quite easily could've had more than one assist, too, had his teammates shown a bit more composure in front of goal, but he was enough of a driving force to inspire Bayern to the much-needed victory going into the Champions League clash with Paris Saint-Germain midweek.
Coman’s silky finish vs. Hannover:
Speaking on Coman’s dominant performance against Hannover, Jupp Heynckes (via Bundesliga.com) said, “He was outstanding. It's delightful to see how he's developed here.”
When Heynckes decided to take him off in the 90th minute to give Franck Ribery his return to action from a lengthy injury layoff, Coman received a standing ovation for his exhaustive efforts. Ribery also chimed in on his French counterpart, saying that “he did a great job.”
Since Heynckes has taken charge, Coman has tallied 3 goals and 3 assists from a total 8 appearances across all competitions, having missed 3 matches in that stretch through injury problems. His goal return doesn’t quite do his contributions justice. Even when he’s not the one scoring, he’s constantly an attacking threat with his blistering pace and his uncanny ability to wrong-foot defenders. Without Ribery and Arjen Robben in the squad, for a considerable stretch, Coman has been an integral part of Bayern’s attacking verve.
Joshua Kimmich and Thomas Muller both added their praises for Coman and insisted that he’s turned a corner and elevated his game to the next level. Coman’s been criticized before for his lack of finishing ability, but Kimmich recognized that the Frenchmen’s precision in the final third has improved:
When he gets his head down and starts sprinting, it's hard for anybody to keep up with him. I know that myself from training. He's also improved in his link-up play, his crossing and shooting, and the first touch for his goal was amazing.
Muller suggested that if Coman can keep creating scoring chances on top of all of his other attributes, he’ll be “pure gold” for the squad moving forward:
We know that Kingsley has extraordinary skills that aren't easy to find. If he puts his foot on the gas – and he has incredible horsepower – every opponent has a tough time against him. He worked the left flank well. He's always been fleet-footed. If he can now add chances that lead to goals then he's pure gold to us.
With a busy period on the calendar coming up before the winter break, a fully fit and firing Coman will be an absolute necessity if Bayern want to maintain dominance atop the Bundesliga table, and later progress in both the DFB-Pokal and Champions League knockout stages in the new year. Ribery has just returned to action and Robben is close to making his return, so Heynckes will have the luxury of being able to rotate his wingers as needed.