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Kovac & co. frustrated by poor finishing, defensive lapse against Augsburg

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It was only a draw, but the 1-1 result felt like a loss for Bayern Munich and a win for Augsburg.

The Bayern Munich's mascot reacts with Bayern Munich's Dutch midfielder Arjen Robben after the German first division Bundesliga match between FC Bayern Munich and FC Augsburg in the stadium in Munich, southern Germany, on September 25, 2018.
Berni consoles an irritated Arjen Robben. In the background: Augsburg’s coach Peter Falk starring as Colombo.
Photo credit should read Christof Stache/AFP/Getty Images

After leading until minutes before the final whistle, Bayern Munich parted ways with Augsburg disappointed to win only one point rather than the three they and the fans expected. A last minute error by Manuel Neuer gave Augsburg a lifeline that Jeffrey Gouweleeuw and Felix Götze converted into a goal. Reactions were accordingly muted (quotes via AZ and TZ).

Center-back Niklas Süle acknowledged how Augsburg’s aggressive play stifled Bayern’s build-up play in the first half of the game. He also noted, as did almost everyone, that Bayern had failed to convert their chances:

We had a hard time getting into the game. Augsburg pressed us one on one all over the pitch. In the second half, we had to score the 2-0, but didn’t succeed, which is very disappointing. We were sometimes open in front of the goalkeeper, where he made super saves.

Augsburg’s late goal, turning Bayern’s win into a draw off of a chaotic corner kick left a sour taste in Süle’s mouth. The center-back viewed conceding to Augsburg as a collective lapse:

The set-piece goal at the end is very annoying; we have to take it on the chin that today. But that will not happen again.

Süle also commented on Leon Goretzka’s first-half performance as a left-back:

We don’t have so many outside-backs right now. He had a yellow card; that’s why the coach took him out. But in the first half, we did really well.

In fact, it emerged that Goretzka took a knock on the ankle and stayed in the locker room after halftime.

Robben: “You have to win”

If Süle was frustrated that Bayern’s defense conceded a late goal, Bayern’s forwards were potentially even more irritated not to have put the game out of Augsburg’s reach long before Götze scored the equalizer. Bayern’s goalscorer Arjen Robben was not amused:

My goal doesn’t count. When you’re leading 1-0 at home, it has to be over; you have to win then. But then we let up. Augsburg played with a lot of courage; played one on one over the whole pitch. We didn’t have any solutions for that. We have to be more intelligent; we simply didn’t play that out well today, although we had lots of scoring chances.

Head coach Niko Kovac concurred, suggesting that he has seen the team struggle to capitalize on its chances already too many times. Kovac said:

You have to be wide awake and focused; we already recently failed to capitalize on several chances. We have to raise the rate.

Augsburg’s own goalscorer, Felix Götze, was delighted to win a point for his new team. Götze left transferred from Bayern to Augsburg just this past summer. Today was his longest performance for Augsburg to date, as he came on for Jan Moravek after the hour mark. Götze felt slightly conflicted about scoring against his former club — but only slightly:

We knew that something was possible. We knew that we all had to give 110%. We knew that we wouldn’t have much possession. We defended really well; are relatively satisfied. It was naturally a fantastic feeling. I couldn’t be too happy, because I have a lot to thank Bayern for. Well, no: I’m immensely happy! Against such a qualitatively good team, we are very satisfied about one point.