Initial reactions and observations
- Bayern Munich finally, unequivocally, went back to the back-four. Hopefully Nagelsmann has seen the light and keeps this setup going forward. The defense wasn’t even good (tons of lucky moments) but the team controlled the game and the shape was much better.
- Serge Gnabry had one of THOSE performances. 3 goals and 2 assists, incredible by him. Hopefully he finds a measure of consistency this season.
- Marc Roca ... hard to say how good he was in midfield. He was struggling to get involved, but the mid itself looked better with him in it. Weird, huh? More data’s needed.
- Niklas Sule dictated the tempo of the game from the back. He seems to be true successor of Alaba/Boateng. Now let’s hang onto him please, don’t let him go to the EPL.
- Lewandowski’s back on the scoring charts! He could’ve had a hat trick if not for the post. Good for him to get these goals, he’s been looking frustrated lately.
Full time: Bayern beat Stuttgart 5-0.
73’ — GOAL! Gnabry gets a hat trick!
72’ — GOAL! Lewandowski gets another.
68’ — GOAL! Lewandowski chips it over Muller (not that one). Great goal.
53’ — GOAL! Gnabry makes it 2-0! Great counterattack.
45’ — Second half kicks off!
Halftime observations and analysis
- Bayern Munich have taken it easy today, far fewer risks than usual. This has resulted in a more controlled game, but loose passing has almost cost the team on a number of situations.
- Alphonso Davies has done a good job containing Koulibaly so far. Their battle has been critical to the course of the game.
- Bayern take fewer shots from the center these days. Robert Lewandowski has been out of the game yet again.
- Stuttgatt should be sanctioned for having a pitch this bad. It’s absolutely horrible, basically their 12th man today.
- #10 assisted #7, good to see.
Halftime: Bayern Munich lead 1-0.
40’ — GOAL! Serge Gnabry curls it past Florian Muller, great finish. Assist by Sane.
26’ — Sub: Kingsley Coman seems to have hurt himself from that battle with Mavropanos, he’s had to come off. Sane is on. So much for rest.
Kickoff: We are underway in Stuttgart!
One hour until kickoff: We have lineups! Lots of rotation from Nagelsmann today. Leroy Sane and Dayot Upamecano finally get some rest, while Marc Roca gets his first Bundesliga start in some time for Bayern Munich. Jamal Musiala is going to play with a broken hand.
Unsere XI für #VFBFCB! #packmas pic.twitter.com/gcjDQ6aUBY— FC Bayern München (@FCBayern) December 14, 2021
It’s the penultimate game of the Hinrunde, and Bayern Munich lead the Bundesliga by six points. With Borussia Dortmund very unlikely to drop points against Greuther Furth, Julian Nagelsmann will want a win against Stuttgart to preserve his lead heading into the winter break. But he has one big problem — Bayern have no midfielders.
Leon Goretzka and Corentin Tolisso are both injured. Marcel Sabitzer just got back from a long calf injury and is doubtful for the game. Jamal Musiala broke a metatarsal bone (in the hand) and might not be able to play. Finally, Joshua Kimmich is also out recovering from his Covid-19 infection.
So where does that leave Nagelsmann? Well, he’ll have to conjure something out of a hat at this point. Marc Roca may be an option for the midfield, or one of the doubtful players could pull through and start. Still, it’ll be far from optimal, so the coach will be relying on his stars at other positions — guys like Robert Lewandowski, Thomas Muller, and Leroy Sane — to get the job done.
It’s Bayern time.
While you’re waiting for the game, why not check out our preview podcast? This week, we combined it with our Champions League draw reaction. Check it out below or at this link.
Location: Mercedes-Benz Arena, Stuttgart, Germany
Time: 6:30 pm local time, 12:30 pm EST
TV/streaming: ESPN+, Find Your Country
Tips for commenting:
- If you’re a new member, feel free to introduce yourself! We’re
mostlyvery friendly! Also, we’re from all parts of the world so don’t feel shy if you’re from a country that doesn’t seem represented on the blog.
- If the comments section starts to slow down for you, just hit the refresh button and keep commenting. It’s not necessary to have the whole comments loaded at one time while you’re just casually following along.
- Keep the sorting to “newest” to easily follow the conversation. It puts the newest comments at the top.
- Here at BFW we celebrate every goal like they do in the stadium: with a chant. The goal chants are for everyone to participate in! Even if you’re lagging behind the others, keep replying to the most recent call of the player’s name. Even if you missed the first call, just start from the second, and so on.
- While swearing is allowed within reason, please be polite to your fellow posters and avoid gratuitous obscenities. Racist, homophobic, and misogynistic language is not allowed whatsoever.
Check out our beginners thread if you have any more questions. That’s about it. Auf geht’s!
Looking for an unending well of Bayern Munich content? Sign up for an SBNation account and join the conversation on Bavarian Football Works. Whether it’s full match coverage and analysis, breaking news, podcasts or something completely different, we have it all.