- This victory was a statement to the rest of Europe that Bayern Munich is not to be trifled with this season. In something that I’ve echoed here multiple times, Bayern Munich’s roster is deep, talented, and capable of — at least — a Champions League semifinal run. Anything less would be a failure.
- Serge Gnabry (four goals) and Robert Lewandowski (two goals) were absolutely fantastic. Gnabry was an uncontrollable force in the second half for the Bavarians, while Lewandowski showed the world who the best No. 9 truly is. The effort and performance of both players should be lauded by fans and feared by opponents.
- Joshua Kimmich’s strike for Bayern’s first goal was a thing of beauty. To that point, Kimmich was sputtering in the midfield and having issues defending centrally (which has been a bit of a theme in his time at that position), but that goal turned his performance around and inspired the team. A future captain? Indeed.
Tottenham players on last night's defeat against Bayern. pic.twitter.com/HNr2z5C3Ec— Bayern & Germany (@iMiaSanMia) October 2, 2019
- Manuel Neuer’s performance will get overlooked by some, but he was on-point and a big factor in why Tottenham did not tally four or five goals themselves.
- Kingsley Coman, while not productive on the score sheet, was a big factor in wearing down the Spurs’ defense with his speed and pressure. It was a great performance from the 23-year-old.
- Philippe Coutinho was not as impactful as previous games, but played a role in helping orchestrate the offense.
- For big games, I think Kovac is going to have to settle into two of these three players as part of his double pivot: Thiago Alcantara, Javi Martinez, and Leon Goretzka (when healthy). Thiago has not been great this season, but he is the best option that Bayern Munich has on the roster. Javi Martinez provides more defensive stability, while Goretzka can give the team a better box-to-box presence as Thiago settles in deeper. Why not Corentin Tolisso? I just don’t think he is all the way back yet and he’s not going to get there this season...and this should be 100% expected. Tolisso is a great talent, but he had a devastating knee injury and many players take a year — or longer — to get all the way back to their previous form. At this stage, Michaël Cuisance is probably considered “not yet ready for prime time player.”
- Tolisso really scuffled along in the first half, but did get better once Thiago entered the game. The kid just needs more time. The club needs to stay patient with him, but at the same time, Kovac has to learn from this experience and make a better call on his XI for a game of this magnitude.
"I'm very happy about tonight."— SPORF (@Sporf) October 2, 2019
⚽ "For myself getting four goals, my first Champions League goals..."
✅ "...but most important is the win for the team and I think such a big win is a good sign for us."
@SergeGnabry reacts to his ⚽⚽⚽⚽ against @SpursOfficial. pic.twitter.com/rSwv2et5bo
- All that said, I sort of agreed with Kovac benching Thiago in hopes of giving him a wake-up call, but the platform and timing of benching him was a little nerve-wracking.
- Early in the game the back-four really struggled. Jerome Boateng looked very slow, Niklas Süle struggled with his positioning, Benjamin Pavard was making mistakes, and David Alaba was still finding his way back from injury. It did get better as Bayern Munich got more confident offensively, but there were some very shaky moments, which is something to monitor in the upcoming weeks.
- I have no idea how Serge Aurier did not at least get a yellow for stomping on Alaba. Sure, it was accidental, but it was reckless and card-worthy.
- This was savage:
Well, that didn’t take long. As always, the British tabloids were ready to pounce on a football manager after a tough loss. The Daily Star has Mauricio Pochettino in a “sack race” with other struggling Premier League skippers:
Marco Silva, Steve Bruce and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer were all ahead of Pochettino going in to last night’s game. But the shambolic display from last year’s Champions League finalists has seen a shake-up in the betting.
Niklas Süle told a little story about a past run-in with police and the only thing that would have made it more Süle-esque would have been the involvement of Frankfurter Kranz.
Emre Can is likely going to move away from Juventus this winter, but a destination has not been named as of yet — mostly because Can has a handful of suitors, but no concrete offers in hand.
Real Betis, however, seems like it might be ready to give Can a permanent home:
Still basically an outcast at Juventus, German international half-back/centre-back Emre Can (25), according to Estadio Deportivo, is still a main target for Real Betis, in search for an alike-featured player again. Spanish club have already been turned by Italian giants last summer, while Can, still on a deal with Bianconeri until June 2022, was tracked by PSG as well.
Can, of course, was linked to Bayern Munich over the summer.
If you were kicking around the idea of getting a Serge Gnabry jersey, take advantage of this offer from the FC Bayern shop:
Milot Rashica is one of the Bundesliga’s brightest young stars and Werder Bremen is looking to keep around for years to come:
Playing for Werder Bremen since January 2018, Kosovar international winger Milot Rashica (23) is in talks with German club on a new long-term. To date, the only angle reportedly missing is the exit clause agreement between the sides involved. Back when playing for Vitesse, Rashica had been inquired about by a bunch more clubs, including Everton and Lazio.
17 years ago today, Arjen Robben made his Champions League debut with PSV Eindhoven: