Bayern have already made it clear with their business during the past two transfer windows that they are serious about their youth recruitment. Following in the wake of Chris Richards, Alphonso Davies, and Jann-Fiete Arp, Bild are reporting that Bayern are interested in signing 16-year old Hannibal Mejbri from AS Monaco’s U19’s. His current contract with Monaco runs through 2021, but he wants to leave and his father, Lotfi told L’Equipe “we are determined to leave [Monaco].” The Bild report also claimed that Manchester United had tried to sign the 16-year-old, but were unsuccessful. He could prove to be the next bit of youth business Bayern wind up completing.
It was a great weekend for Bayern with respect to the title race as they secured a vital 3-1 victory over Schalke at the Allianz Arena after both Borussia Dortmund and Borussia Monchengladbach dropped points. Dortmund blew a 3-0 goal lead within 12 minutes late in the second half to finish 3-3 against Hoffenheim and ‘Gladbach were routed 3-0 at home by Hertha Berlin. Bayern move up the 2nd place and are now just five points behind Dortmund.
Bayern were by far the better side against Schalke, and could’ve easy scored more than 3 goals with how dominant they were. Per WhoScored, they bossed 69.6% of the possession and out-shot Schalke 16-7 en route the crucial win. Here are some quick noteworthy highlights on the match:
- Bayern got off to a quick start, scoring inside the first 12 minutes. Robert Lewandowski will certainly have had a shout for the goal, but it was officially ruled as an own goal by Schalke’s Jeffrey Bruma:
- Schalke’s goal in the 25th minute came completely against the run of play, but Bayern were sloppy defending a counter attack yet again. They NEED to get that squared away, or teams like Liverpool are really going to expose them.
- James Rodriguez put in a shift worthy of (arguably) meriting more starts and his first half stats from OptaFranz don’t lie:
59 - @jamesdrodriguez hatte die meisten Ballaktionen (59), Torschussvorlagen (5) und Schüsse (3) aller Spieler in der 1. Halbzeit zwischen @FCBayern und Schalke. Aktivposten. #FCBS04 pic.twitter.com/fdsgjcPdfp— OptaFranz (@OptaFranz) February 9, 2019
- Lewandowski scored his 100th Allianz Arena goal and also provided a makeshift assist for Serge Gnabry’s goal:
Bayern may hove won convincingly and closed the gap on Dortmund, but there’s still planty of work to do. Even when Bayern were 3-1 up in the later stages of the match, Kovac was still vociferously shouting tactical instructions to his players on the pitch and looked agitated on a number of occasions despite being in control of the match. Speaking to the club’s official web site after the match (as transcribed by BT Sport), he said that there some periods he wasn’t quite pleased with, perhaps as a result of some heavy legs from the DFB-Pokal win vs Hertha Berlin that required extra time:
We did really good in the first half and temporarily in the second, but the 120-minute cup match was noticeable, in Dortmund too. You mustn’t allow that when you are three up after 75 minutes and that was a warning. But I think it was a deserved win and the right margin of victory.
Gnabry went on to say that Bayern need to stay fully focused and not worry about what Dortmund are doing elsewhere, even if they play prior to Bayern on any given match week:
We knew what was at stake because we played later and we knew Dortmund’s result. We must win every match, regardless of Dortmund’s results, to keep our chances alive. So we do our best and try to catch up with them match after match.
Brazzo and Karl-Heinz Rummenigge have no time for Dietmar Hamann’s criticism of Lewandowski (Bavarian Football Works)
Last week, former Liverpool and Bayern player Dietmar Hamann said that he felt Lewandowski was “starting to become a problem at Bayern.” Lewandowski labelled the criticism as “stupid” and speaking after the win over Schalke, sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic and club CEO Karl-Heinz Rummenigge also voiced their distaste at Hamann’s remark. Brazzo accused Hamann of “waging a campaign” against Lewandowski and called him rather “a problem for Sky.” Rummenigge simply said, “He’s not worth a sentence from me.”
Berni made the rounds to FC Bayern’s official fan club of Texas in Dallas to take in the action during the match against Schalke. FCBayern Texas also have locations in Houston, Austin, and Corpus Christi. If you ever have the chance to watch a match at one of Bayern’s officially recgonized fan clubs, I HIGHLY recommend it - I’ve personally had the privilege of watching the 2018 DFL Supercup with FCB New York City and it was a blast!
Who knows what kind of trouble Berni and Tex Hooper could get into the more they hangout with one another...Also, we hope you enjoyed your birthday, Isabella!:
If you didn’t catch this, you should. Take a look at the journey that Chris Richards made from Alabama to Bavaria and everywhere in between. Bayern, Chris, his family, and his former coach Eric Quill gave us great access to tell the story on how the American made the jump to Germany.