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Düsseldorf coach Friedhelm Funkel criticises Jerome Boateng; says Manuel Neuer is still the best in the league

Fortuna Düsseldorf’s coach had withering criticism for the defensive lapses committed by Jerome Boateng after his team came from behind to earn a 3-3 draw at the Allianz Arena.

MUNICH, GERMANY - NOVEMBER 24: Jerome Boateng of Bayern Muenchen looks on during the Bundesliga match between FC Bayern Muenchen and Fortuna Duesseldorf at Allianz Arena on November 24, 2018 in Munich, Germany. Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Bongarts/Getty Images

Improvement in the central defence is an urgent need of the hour for Bayern Munich. The centre-backs have been very vulnerable this season. After Saturday’s match, Jerome Boateng fell prey to Fortuna Düsseldorf coach Friedhelm Funkel’s criticism. In Funkel’s view, Boateng might have prevented Lukebakio from scoring his second goal in the 77th minute if he hadn’t focussed on catching him in an offside trap: (via SportBild)

When I see how Boateng tried to play the offside trap on the second goal — my dear fellow, that was alarming. No coach in the world can do anything about that when Boateng plays the offside trap only because he’s too lazy to run after him. He takes two steps forward and wants to get out of a race with Lukebakio. That shouldn’t happen to a such a world-class player.

Funkel also said that he thinks Manuel Neuer is still the best goalkeeper in the Bundesliga and the reason behind his instability is Bayern’s vulnerable defence. He also observed that the Bavarians are conceding goals at an alarming rate compared to previous seasons:

But Manuel Neuer is also not so stable this season, because the defence is not so stable. He is still our best goalkeeper in Germany. He can’t do anything about the goals. But in a good phase, he might have saved one or two, because he’d play a bit more successfully. People know that now too. Bayern have conceded 17 goals, and that in just 12 games. They’ve sometimes done that after 34 games.

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