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Opinion: Bayern Munich has been dominant under Julian Nagelsmann

The Hinrunde has concluded and looking back, it has been a splendid showing from Nagelsmann’s Bayern. The statistics speak for themselves.

Borussia Dortmund v FC Bayern München - Bundesliga
Are you not entertained?
Photo by Joosep Martinson/Getty Images

Bayern Munich is currently one of the top sides in the world and is playing some really good football. Some might say that this could be attributed to a weaker Bundesliga, while others might point the finger at less fixture congestion. While both these things may be true and may have played a role, the main reason why Bayern are so good this season is their new coach, Julian Nagelsmann.

Statistically, Bayern have never been this good in the Bundesliga before, at least in terms of goals scored and the goal difference. Bayern have scored a whopping 56 (!!!) goals in the Hinrunde, which also happens to be an all-time Bundesliga record. They have conceded a meager 16 goals, which sees them tied joint-lowest with SC Freiburg. The goal difference of 40 is also an all-time Hinrunde best.

In the Champions League, Bayern have steamrolled through all opposition. The Bavarians have put 22 goals past their opposition in just 6 games, which is close to 4 goals per game (highest in this campaign). They have also conceded the least goals (just 3), and have the highest goal difference as a result (19). Yes, Bayern didn’t have particularly strong opponents, but there wasn’t a single game where the side displayed its full strength or turned on the turbo. Third gear was enough to get them through every game comfortably.

FC Barcelona v Bayern München: Group E - UEFA Champions League
Lewandowski and co. were impeccable in the UCL group stage.
Photo by Pedro Salado/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

There is, however, one result that stands out, and that is the obvious elephant in the room - the 5-0 loss to Gladbach in the DFB Pokal. Frankly, the cup exit was embarrassing, and the game couldn’t have come at a worse time - Nagelsmann had just gone down with Covid, and the team had to get a result without the coach on the sidelines. Add to that the fatigue, a terrible off day for all the players (despite the lineup looking great), Gladbach being super clinical on the offense (converted around 40% of their shots) and Sommer having another prime-Neuer mode game, and you get a 5-0 bloodbath.

I’m not justifying the loss. It felt terrible, but sometimes, when your club wins so many games so comfortably, you can excuse the players if they blank out in the occasional game (as long as it’s not a UCL knockout game). After all, Hansi Flick’s Bayern lost to Holstein Kiel in the Pokal in the same round last season. It would be really unfair to Nagelsmann if we let that one loss mar his stellar track record thus far.

The Bavarians are on course to score a record 112 goals in the Bundesliga if this form carries on through the Rückrunde. The defense is also on track to concede 12 fewer goals than last season in the Bundesliga. Players like Sané, Davies, Lucas, Musiala, and Süle have elevated their play under the new coach. Bayern remain unmatched in the Champions League.

FC Bayern München v VfL Wolfsburg - Bundesliga
This trio has been straight fire this season.
Photo by Christina Pahnke - sampics/Corbis via Getty Images

The signs look very promising. There is no reason to panic or wail, and we shouldn’t let nostalgia cloud our judgements. There is a reason the board brought Nagelsmann here. He is one of the best young coaches in the world, and we need to give him a fair shot. A chance to prove himself.

We can head to the war room or push the panic button if we’ve lost the BuLi title or have been knocked out of the UCL in embarrassing fashion, but until then, just sit back and enjoy Nagelsball. It’s really fun to watch.

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