Initial reactions and observations
- Bayern Munich’s defensive woes continue. The defending was dire, Stuttgart could’ve scored three or four.
- Injuries to Jerome Boateng and Javi Martinez will worry Flick a lot, especially if Lucas Hernandez is also injured. The team cannot lose any more players. The midfield is also a point of concern now, with Tolisso injured. Who will play against Atletico Madrid?
- Leroy Sane once again comes on and creates a goal — his record as a super sub is incredible this season.
- Douglas Costa was poor. He needs to sharpen every aspect of his game, because right now no one is gonna be fooled by the last-minute goal.
- The referee was pretty lenient with Stuttgart and harsh on Bayern. Lewandowski especially bore the brunt of this, as he was fouled repeatedly without recourse. No wonder the players are dropping like flies.
Full time: Bayern win 3-1.
87’ — GOAL! Costa has been terrible since he came on, but he cuts in side and scores a Robben. 3-1 now.
81’ — Tolisso leaves the pitch due to injury. Looks like a hammy. Javi Martinez comes on.
68’ — Substitution: Leroy Sane, Tanguy Nianzou, and Douglas Costa come on for Serge Gnabry, Jerome Boateng, and Kingsley Coman. Boateng seemed to be injured.
57’ — Substitution: Niklas Sule on for Lucas Hernandez. David Alaba presumably moves to left-back.
45’ — The second half kicks off! Bayern lead 2-1 right now.
Halftime observations analysis
- Kingsley Coman is the best winger on the squad right now. One goal and one assist so far, plus a dominating performance.
- What a goal by Lewy, he’s a monster.
- The defense is basically nonexistent. Lucas Hernandez, who is usually solid, has looked poor at the back today.
- Corentin Tolisso has been disappointing in midfield so far.
- Stuttgart had plenty of chances — this game could easily be 3-2 by now.
45’ — GOAL! What a strike! Lewandowski beats the keeper from outside the box.
37’ — GOAL! Kingsley Coman makes it 1-1.
20’ — Goal. Bayern’s defensive woes continue. Stuttgart makes it 1-0 from a counter.
Kickoff: We’re underway in Stuttgart!
One hour until kickoff: We have lineups! Marc Roca sits on the bench while Corentin Tolisso starts. Interesting.
Both teams come into the game on the back of league draws. Hansi Flick’s biggest worry will be his defense, which at a low point in his tenure as coach. The only reason why Bayern’s goals conceded stat doesn’t look worse is because Manuel Neuer is the best goalkeeper in the world — maybe ever — and routinely defies xG margins with his incredible saves. Niklas Sule has traveled with the team, while Benjamin Pavard is reprtedly fit and ready to play. If both are in the XI, then maybe Neuer will get some extra protection compared to previous games.
Meanwhile, last week Bayern’s attack struggled to break down a compact Bremen defense, so Robert Lewandowski and Thomas Muller will need to step up with more goals and assists. The wingers will also need to be better, especially Leroy Sane, who’s been criticized for losing the ball too much and not defending. Hansi has been critical of his team’s performances in the last few days — will they respond the way he wants?
It’s Bayern time.
Location: Mercedes-Benz Arena, Stuttgart, Germany
Time: 3:30 pm local time, 9:30 am EST
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