It’s hard to argue the fact that Lucas Hernandez is currently exhibiting his best run of form in a Bayern Munich shirt since joining from Atletico Madrid in the summer of 2019. So far, the French international has made a total of eight appearances across all competitions this season, including four starts in the Bundesliga, two in the UEFA Champions League, and one in both the DFL and UEFA Supercups. Hansi Flick has preferred him at the left-back spot over Alphonso Davies on most occasions this season, and the Canadian international now faces a long spell on the sidelines due to an ankle injury suffered in Bayern’s 5-0 win over Eintracht Frankfurt.
In a recent exclusive with kicker, both Hansi Flick and sporting director Hasan “Brazzo” Salihamidzic lauded the French defender and highlighted his fighting spirit. Hernandez had his own injury battles to face when he first joined Bayern, which can be as much of a mental hardship as it is physical, but he’s worked hard to get to where he’s at now as Flick’s preferred starting left-back.
“Lucas is crazy with his attitude. It’s sensational. He’s a real fighter,” Flick said.
When Hernandez’s playing style was being discussed, his performances from 2018 up until last season was highlighted, and in particular, some of the issues he had with timing of his runs and his positioning. He’s not one to shy away from a challenge or hesitate bombing forward, but his blistering pace also makes him effective in recovery runs, which was on display in particular in Bayern’s 3-2 DFL-Supercup win over Borussia Dortmund.
“That’s his game,” Flick said of what kicker referred to as a “kamikaze flyer” style of play.
Salihamidzic added to Flick’s laudation of Hernandez by complementing his genuine nature.
“Lucas has a big heart; he has a straight character. He’s always gives everything and is a team player,” Brazzo said. He went on to say that Hernandez will “further stabilize” as the season progresses and he continues to get more, consistent starting minutes under his belt. “Everyone can see how much he helps our team with his physical robustness, his passion and power. That’s why we never doubted him last season, and now you can see how important he is for our team,” Brazzo concluded.
Hernandez himself echoed what both Flick and Brazzo said about him, recognizing that he didn’t have the easiest of starts to life at Bayern.
“My first year was difficult. I was able to think and reflect. I’m neither sad nor disappointed. The club thinks highly of me, and I want to confirm this trust. I am a fighter. Bayern made big efforts to pay this 80 million. I have to show that they invested their money well and that I deserve to wear and defend the colors of this club. I want to shine both with the team and individually,” he said.
Lastly, it’s known that he can play either left-back or center-back despite the fact that he’s primarily only been used on the left-defensive flank so far this season. Personally, he said he really doesn’t have a preference of one spot or the other.
“I don’t mind either. I feel good in both positions,” Hernandez said.