Hansi Flick made it three wins out of three for his tenure as interim manager with Bayern Munich’s comprehensive 4-0 routing of Fortuna Düsseldorf. Goals from Joshua Kimmich, Corentin Tolisso, Serge Gnabry, and Philippe Coutinho secured the three points for Bayern, as they also kept their third consecutive clean sheet.
Despite the convincing win away from home, Flick feels that there are still things that need to be worked on, which he made clear when speaking to Sky after the win. In particular, he felt, the second half performance compared to the first 45 minutes was weaker (via kicker):
In the second half, we still had room to improve. We lost the ball too many times and too foolishly. We have to work on that in the coming weeks. We planned to pick up where we left off in the game against Dortmund. I was very happy with the first half. We put the opponent under pressure immediately, just as we planned. That worked impressively well.
To be fair, Dusseldorf had a handful of chances in the second half, when Friedhelm Funkel forced his side to play more adventurously going forward, as they were 3-0 down at halftime. Dusseldorf’s lackluster finishing in the final third was fortuitous for Bayern, despite the fact that Manuel Neuer only had to make one or two decent saves.
It’s Flick’s hope that the performance against Borussia Dortmund in der Klassiker and in the first half of the Düsseldorf win becomes a consistency for Bayern moving forward:
We have to bring this performance game by game, next on Tuesday against Red Star [in the Champions League]. But I’m optimistic about that.
Flick is just enjoying the “here and now”
Since Flick has taken charge of the club as interim manager, Bayern has won all three matches and not conceded a single goal, which is a feat they struggled to accomplish under Niko Kovac. Karl-Heinz Rummenigge had confirmed at Bayern’s annual general meeting that Flick would remain in charge until at least Christmas during the winter-pause period in the Bundesliga.
When he was asked about his future and how long he anticipates managing the club, Flick just said he’s enjoying the “here and now,” without worrying too much about what the near future holds (tz):
I can imagine a lot, but that is a very far way. It’s fun to be able to work with the team. That’s why the preconditions are there. That’s why I can live in the moment well. I’m enjoying the here and now, and on Tuesday it goes on again. The club now has time to think over what happens next. I’m doing my job and trying to do it well.
While Bayern has been playing a much improved brand of football since he’s taken charge, Flick says that he’s unsure of whether the winning streak will last until Christmas, because anything can happen in the Bundesliga:
Of course we hope that it lasts until Christmas, but we all know that soccer is a day-to-day business, and we have to see that we can deliver that [performance] day by day.
The players in the squad as well as the front office have made a point of highlighting how much trust everyone has in Flick, but he admits that the connection he has with the players just comes naturally to him:
That’s totally normal for me. That’s just how I am, and I learned that way from my coaches. That’s why it’s totally normal for me that you have a certain empathy for the players.