In an amazing match against Wolfsburg, Bayern Munich was bested by Liverpool. The first half gave us some hope of eventually going through to quarterfinals, but Liverpool dominated the second half and scored two goals. In the end, Bayern fans can be disappointed by the team’s performance. Even though the final score is poor, some performances are still worth mentioning.
Jersey Swap: Sadio Mané
He was definitely the best player on the pitch today and was a constant threat to Manuel Neuer’s goal. He scored the opening goal after capitalizing on a big mistake by Neuer. His second goal came late in the game and ended all Bayern’s hopes of a comeback. Virgil van Dijk also put in a strong performance with a goal and an assist. His goal was probably the turning point of the match.
Tip of the Cap: Serge Gnabry
Although he did not have many chances, Gnabry was relatively good today, earning his place on the match awards with his hard work throughout the game. For the better part of the match, he was the only dangerous Bayern player in the final third. And it was Gnabry who provoked an own goal by Joël Matip after his low cross. To be fair, Robert Lewandowski would probably have smashed it in, but Matip denied him the pleasure of doing so. Gnaby also had another dangerous cross later in the game, but both Lewandowski and James Rodriguez missed the ball by centimeters. A ‘A’ for effort, but we expect more from Gnabry on the biggest stage.
Golf Clap: Thiago Alcantara
It was a hard game for the Spaniard, a game that was largely decided by the midfield. Thiago had a solid night, but Bayern needed him to be more creative. Liverpool managed to minimize his movement and that played well for Klopp’s side. Thiago made important interceptions and was essential for the Bavarians in transition. He managed 84% accurate passes and won two out of two tackles and five of ten duels.
Standing Ovation: Javi Martinez
Another game, another solid performance by Javi. He was extremely important for Bayern tonight, standing as a bulwark in front of the defense. Javi on 75% of his duels (nine out of twelve) and made two interceptions and three clearances. He has seen his playing time increase in the past months as he has regained the coach’s trust. All in all, a solid performance from the Basque, despite the result.
Meister of the Match: Mats Hummels
Like Javi, Mats also continued with his solid performances. It is especially good to see that Löw’s radical decision to cut him from the national team didn’t affect him much — at least, not his performances. Hummels made key interceptions at critical times. He was usually capable of stopping Mohamed Salah in his runs, at one time dispossessing him in the midfield rather embarrassingly just as Liverpool seemed poised to pounce.
Both Hummels and Javi were great until Virgil jumped over them, scoring Liverpool’s second goal on a set piece. After that, not only Mats’s but also Bayern’s performance in general declined. In the 84’ minute, Mané sneaked behind Hummels’ back and scored the final goal. Despite that, Hummels put in a strong performance for Bayern and he deserves a at least a consolatory ‘pat on the back’ in light of the poor performances on the team.