The 2020/21 season schedule for Bayern Munich players is starting to look exactly like a FIFA career-mode glitch. The Bavarians will face three teams in three different competitions in the short span of seven days.
On 13th of October, Germany, Austria, Poland and France will play their fourth fixture of the UEFA Nations League. Following the end of the international break, Hansi Flick’s side will host 1. FC Düren on October 15th in the first round of DFB-Pokal.
The game was postponed from its original date of September 11th to give the quintuple winners extra time for rest and recovery from last season’s UEFA Champions League winning campaign. However, as it turns out, the postponement has made little difference, especially to the hectic schedule of Die Roten internationals.
In roughly 46 hours from returning to domestic action against Düren, the Bavarians will travel to Beilefield to face Arminia in the Bundesliga. That means the players on international duty will have three matches in their timetable for the next five days.
Considering the match and travel fatigue on top of Flick’s demanding tactics, it is highly improbable that the likes of Robert Lewandowski, David Alaba, Joshua Kimmich and Benjamin Pavard will get playing time against both Düren and Arminia. As a result, Hasan Salihamidžić’s all four transfer deadline day signings along with American whizz-kid Chris Richards are predicted to start in the Pokal opener in place of Bayern’s usual suspects, this weekend (per German outlets Sport1 and kicker).
Mit #Nübel! Im Pokal vs. Düren (Donnerstag live auf @SPORT1 ) wird kräftig rotiert. Die Nationalspieler werden geschont. Neuzugänge können sich zeigen. Richards wird perspektivisch in der Innenverteidigung eingeplant. Deshalb holte man auch Sarr. Erwarte ~ diese Aufstellung pic.twitter.com/JqOsWpcxg2— Florian Plettenberg (@Plettigoal) October 11, 2020
On paper, the lineup looks well-balanced with every player slotted in his preferred position.
Alexander Nubel might receive his first start in between the sticks. The young German will be able to give club captain Manuel Neuer a break after his energy consuming sweeper-keeping in Joachim Löw’s dreadful defensive system.
Chris Richards and Marc Roca will be partnered with veterans Jerome Boateng and Javi Martinez, respectively. With adequate cover, the two youngsters will get the freedom to take risks and showcase their talent from the center of the pitch.
Upfront, Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting and Thomas Muller will spearhead the offense. In addition to the attacking creativity of Muller and Musiala, Choupo will be supported by the speedster combination of Douglas Costa and Alphonso Davies from left flank. Newcomer Bouna Sarr will also be looking to make his mark through his attacking thrusts from the right side.
After Arminia, Die Roten will kick-off their Champions League title defense by hosting Atletico Madrid on October 21st. Looking at the upcoming tight schedule and the importance of UCL clash with Los Colchoneros, it’s best if Flick lets newcomers give a much-needed breather to the stalwarts of the team.