Marcel Sabitzer found himself in a familiar position at Bayern Munich’s game against SL Benfica: on the bench. The Austrian international and former captain of RB Leipzig played just 18 minutes late in the second half of Bayern’s 5-2 Champions League win against a thoroughly outmatched Benfica, and even in those circumstances Sabitzer had an evening to forget: he misplayed a pass directly into a Benfica defender that resulted in their second goal. On the very next play, after Bayern kicked off in possession, Sabitzer turned the ball over again with another errant pass to no one—straight out of bounds.
Sabitzer was not in the mood to celebrate, according to Bild. He went straight into the locker room after the game, and he also missed practice on Wednesday. Why is a matter of speculation.
Marcel Sabitzer wasn't in a good mood last night. He went directly into the dressing room after the game and didn't celebrate with the fans alongside his teammates. The Austrian didn't train with the team today either. It's still unclear whether he's injured or rested [Bild]— Bayern & Germany (@iMiaSanMia) November 3, 2021
Although his absence from practice is curious, Sabitzer’s bad mood is not surprising. When Bayern signed him for a mere €15m, he looked like one of the steals of the 2020 summer transfer window. With each passing game, his signing looks increasingly like a steal in the opposite direction: Sabitzer has played a paltry 415 minutes for Bayern across competitions, and he has started in only two of his eleven appearances.
Sabitzer has been dogged by mediocre performances, which have already drawn the attention of commentators, including BFW.
Prior to his game against Benfica, Sabitzer experienced a new low at Bayern’s previous Bundesliga game against FC Union: since Leon Goretzka was sidelined by a minor injury, head coach Julian Nagelsmann opted to start Corentin Tolisso. Sabitzer had to content himself with 22 minutes as a late sub.
Whatever the real reason behind his absence from training, it is safe to say that Sabitzer’s season has not gone according to plan.