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Daily Schmankerl: The aftermath of Bayern vs. Benfica; Jurgen Klopp gets weird; Thiago is training; and MORE!

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Now that was an effort...

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Die Folgen: Bayern vs. Benfica (Bavarian Football Works)

Well, that was more like it. Bayern Munich dismantled Benfica 5-1, largely behind the efforts of some of the team’s most oft-criticized veterans. Here are some quick hitters on the match:

  • It has been said by many already - including this guy you may know - but that was as confident and sharp as Manuel Neuer has played since returning from his foot injury. Neuer was aggressive and assertive, and most importantly decisive.
  • That was a classic game from Arjen Robben. Two signature goals and flashes of the speed, determination, and bravery to take on defenders that carried him throughout his career.
  • Robert Lewandowski found his goal scoring form (though I would argue that one “off” game doesn’t mean it ever left) as he also contributed a brace.
  • I would have trouble finding much fault with any individual’s performance from yesterday. I can’t think of anyone who really struggled or was a hindrance to the winning effort.
  • Looking at Joshua Kimmich in the role of CDM, I still think he drifts too far up field in that role. Many times Leon Goretzka sat deeper to cover for Kimmich. It is not to say that Kimmich can’t do it - he certainly has the skillset, awareness, and talent to play that position - it’s just that this squad will be set up best with Kimmich at right back once Thiago returns. Hopefully that is the plan. Also, Kimmich was credited with two assists for the game.
  • Speaking of Goretzka, he won’t get credit for it, but his ability to read the position of his teammates on the pitch and then adjust his own accordingly was key. Whether that was driven by Niko Kovač or not, isn’t known at this point, but Goretzka’s awareness of his defensive responsibilities was much greater yesterday.
  • It was good to see Franck Ribery get one.
  • There are very few instances in life where you should ever root for someone to get fired. Kovač is not one of those people. We can agree or disagree with his tactics, but he does seem to be genuinely be engaged with this team and has put forth the necessary effort to try and make things work. It was good to see him get the “W” and hopefully he can build off of that. That said, this is Bayern, and excellence isn’t just expected, it’s demanded. Kovač needs to find a way to motivate his team for the Bundesliga like he did yesterday for the Champions League.

Here are all of Bayern’s goals from yesterday:

If you missed our Match Awards, Observations, or this really great piece celebrating Lewandowski’s 50th Champions League goal, give them a look:

Jurgen Klopp must have dialed “1-900” or “1-976” numbers in his youth (ESPN UK)

For those too young to remember what a 1-900 number or 1-976 number is...well, here you go. No wonder Tom Adams is a Liverpool fan...

Thiago and Kingsley Coman are training (@BILD_Bayern)

Thiago6 is doing the entire Training today: Now playing station in the final game! Also Kingsley #Coman is full #FCB

Report: Arsene Wenger’s agent watched Bayern’s meltdown against Düsseldorf in the VIP section at the Allianz Arena (@cfbayern)

It could mean nothing, it could mean everything, but SportBild’s Christian Falk tweeted that Arsene Wenger’s agent allegedly watched the Fortuna Düsseldorf match in the VIP area at the Allianz Arena.

Bayern loosely linked to Everton loanee (ThisIsFutbol)

Loose, so loose:

German heavyweights Bayern Munich are to launch a surprise scouting mission for Everton’s loaned out winger Henry Onyekuru in Galatasaray’s clash with Locomotiv Moscow on Wednesday, according to Fotospor. Onyekuru has been decent this season with four goals but he has hardly done anything to warrant Bayern’s reported interested and unless he absolutely tears Locomotiv Moscow to shreds, he is hardly going to impress enough to get a move to Germany. This might just be a one off visit to see if he can dazzle, but no one should be holding their breath over a move happening.

Uh, I don’t even know what to say (@brfootball)

I censored that a bit (don’t need to get called into John N. Dillon’s office!), but I think you get the point. If you really need the original tweet, just clink the link.