Bayern Munich’s 6-2 victory over RB Salzburg in the Champions League was a rousing and rollicking affair that saw two teams take their respective offensive prowess and trade punches for almost 80 minutes until the Bavarians took over the game. Here are some quick hitters on the match:
- That game was...fun. A lot of fun. The back-and-forth between the two teams was a thrill-ride to watch, especially early in the match. I absolutely love how Jesse Marsch coached his team. They knew what their strengths were and pushed them right at Bayern Munich — just begging the Bavarians to try and match them punch-for-punch. Bayern Munich, of course, did all that and more, but it was awesome to watch a team use a “take no prisoners” philosophy against the biggest, baddest team there is in the world. As they said in Office Space, “You either kick someone’s...” (you know the rest). RB Salzburg at least took a swing.
- As everyone will tell you, this game was MUCH closer than the score-line indicates. It was just a fantastic showing of gutty and aggressive offensive play from RB Salzburg.
- If there was one player who would have enjoyed this style of game, it was Leon Goretzka, who unfortunately missed the fixture. His ability to go box-to-box and fly into plays offensively would have been a great asset to the Bavarians in this game. No offense to Corentin Tolisso — he has his own fine qualities — but this game was tailor-made for Goretzka.
- Leroy Sane came on late, but did this:
- I thought Robert Lewandowski was really, really good on the day. Sure the Polish Hitman had a brace, but his movement throughout the offensive zone has become an absolute weapon. It almost seems like there are two Raumdeuters on the pitch at times.
- Jerome Boateng has officially made it back, right? What a performance for the veteran defender as his 79th minute goal opened up the floodgates for Bayern Munich. Overall, Boateng was Bayern Munich’s best defender and took another big step in convincing the board that it should extend the contract of the 32-year-old.
- Lucas Hernandez had some good moments, but he and Benjamin Pavard were very shaky on the defensive flanks at times. Pavard was just not right all game and did not look like himself.
- Hernandez did, however, top-off his day with this rocket:
- RB Salzburg midfielder Dominik Szoboszlai showed well overall, but faded a bit toward the end of the game. Playing against a power club that he was previously linked to probably had the 20-year-old pressing a bit, but the kid is a talent. It will be fun watching to see where he ends up. It likely won’t be with Bayern Munich given the backlogged midfield, but he has the potential to be an impact player on a top-team.
- It might not have been Manuel Neuer’s most efficient effort, but the goalkeeper just continues to make plays when Bayern Munich needs him most.
- Overall, it was not Bayern Munich’s finest performance. At times, the Bavarians were on their heels and looking wobbly, but they gathered their collective wit and kept punching. That is what champions do even if they feel a bit overwhelmed.
- This game was a good set up for Borussia Dortmund’s potential strategy. If Lucien Favre decides to have his boys run at Bayern Munich’s high back-line, Hansi Flick’s squad has already gotten a warm-up. The only difference is that Dortmund would be doing it with far more talented players.
As FC Barcelona and Real Madrid might be (allegedly) fading from their respective interest in David Alaba, it appears that Chelsea is joining the fray with Liverpool and Manchester City. Per The Express, “Chelsea and Liverpool are said to be interested.”
Liverpool’s desire to bring in Alaba has long been rumored and Manchester City’s Pep Guardiola is also likely to have interest in his former charge, but this is the first time we’ve heard that Chelsea might want to make a bid.
Fit-wise, Alaba could potentially make the biggest impact for Chelsea as he would automatically become the best defender on the squad. The trump card, however, is if Alaba would use his status as a star player to finagle a way into Chelsea’s already crowded midfield.
Personally, I think Alaba’s value (both monetarily and as a player) drops if he insists on playing as a midfielder.
Well...here is one we haven’t heard before: “Agent” Alan Aguzarov spoke about which clubs FC Zenit Saint Petersburg midfielder Daler Kuzyaev could have moved to during the last transfer window. Shockingly, one of them was...Bayern Munich? And it would’ve happened if it wasn’t for that pesky Michaël Cuisance “failing” his medical exam with Leeds United.
“They write that I am Daler’s agent, but this is not entirely true. I am not his agent, but I provide some kind of support to the Kuzyaev family and am in contact with his father Adyam,” said Aguzarov as he declared his case for why he should be considered a legitimate source of information.
Aguzarov then dropped this bomb:
The Munich side could have signed Daler if their player [Michaël Cuisance] hadn’t failed a medical examination at the Premier League club.
Kuzyaev, a 27-year-old central midfielder, would have been an interesting signing — if this report was true. Assuming (**HUGE assumption**) that there is at least some truth to this (**there’s likely not**), it seems Kuzyaev would have been a veteran reserve for depth.
More likely, though, this is a complete fabrication.
An agent...making something up??? That could never happen.
Serge Gnabry gave some credit to Thomas Müller for the squad’s top-shelf performances:
I wonder if the German national team could use anyone like that?
The father of Thiago Alcantara told the story of how he helped grease the way for Rafinha Alcantara to end up at Paris Saint-Germain after Thiago opted for Liverpool. Mazinho (Iomar do Nascimento) was candid in explaining how he helped convince PSG sporting director Leonardo Araújo on the quality of his younger son.
“I had already spoken with Leonardo a while ago, but it was for Thiago,” Mazinho recalled. “Leonardo wanted to sign him for PSG, but Thiago had already found an agreement with Liverpool. We then spoke about Rafa but he wasn’t part of Leonardo’s plans at that moment. I think that he must have thought about it, that he realized the nature of the opportunity and that it would be a coup to sign him. When he began talks again (the day before the end of the window), Leonardo had changed his mind. And everything accelerated on the final day. It was on Monday that we had to work hard to convince both clubs. We were scared, but thanks to God, five or six hours before the deadline, we found an agreement. Leonardo wanted Thiago, he got Rafinha. And for Rafa, it was a dream to join such a club.”
Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar is reportedly tired of waiting for FC Barcelona to rescue him:
Despite having been close to join back Barcelona FC for a long time, Brazilian international winger/forward and PSG resident star Neymar (28) is reportedly planning to extend his stay in the capacity of a French giants player.
According to AS, former Barça star is in fact done with waiting for Blaugrana to make a proper move, and, keeping in mind Spanish titans’ ongoing financial disarray, might be soon kickstart PSG extension talks, which would make it easier for the club themselves to part ways from their other main name, Kylian Mbappé.
And we think Alaba’s situation is a saga...Neymar’s nonsense has seemingly gone on since the day he signed with PSG.
In the midst of the craziness that was the Bayern Munich vs. RB Salzburg tilt, Lewandowski took a little time to honor Gerd Müller. Müller, of course, is slowly losing his battle against Alzheimer’s Disease, but the Polish Hitman wanted to show his appreciation for the man, who many think was among the best to have ever done it.