After some hectic Champions League action in midweek, Bayern Munich can finally enjoy a nice calm game against 14th placed Koln, right? WRONG. Koln may be low in the table, but they’ve beaten teams like Gladbach and Borussia Dortmund this season, and managed a draw with RB Leipzig. Bayern could suffer the same fate if they’re not careful.
The big news is that the injury crisis which had gripped the team is slowly subsiding. Serge Gnabry and Thomas Muller were back in team training and will be available tomorrow, while Tanguy Nianzou is a few weeks away from joining the squad. This means that only Benjamin Pavard (COVID-19) and Corentin Tolisso (thigh) remain unavailable for the game.
So what will the lineup look like? Flick being Flick makes me think that Thomas Muller will start tomorrow, occupying his usual role behind Robert Lewandowski at striker. Muller’s been training more or less throughout his quarantine, so the coach might decide to give him 60 minutes against Koln to warm himself up for the game. Jamal Musiala can come on in the second half.
Another player set to make his comeback to the squad is Serge Gnabry, who we may see line up on the flanks for one of Kingsley Coman or Leroy Sane. If that happens, then who knows which one it’s going to be? Maybe Kingsley — he’s been playing a lot of minutes lately.
In midfield, expect the normal duo of Leon Goretzka and Joshua Kimmich. Flick might want his players to build up more chemistry before the upcoming game against BVB, so he might give them at least another 60 minutes together. Expect either Marc Roca or Javi Martinez off the bench to close the game out.
Meanwhile, in defense, an unchanged lineup is on the cards. Putting Niklas Sule back at right-back means that he can dribble freely at Koln’s defense, while Alphonso Davies will probably man the defense on the other side. David Alaba and Jerome Boateng are the most likely candidates for the central defense.
It’s not a lot of rotation, but here’s how Bayern might line up tomorrow:
- Jamal Musiala in for Thomas Muller at AM.
- Kingsley Coman in for Serge Gnabry or Leroy Sane on the wing.
- Lucas Hernandez in for Alphonso Davies at left-back.
Bild thinks that Musiala will start over Muller.
Bayern's predicted XI against Köln according to Bild:— Sextuple winners (@iMiaSanMia) February 26, 2021
Neuer – Süle, Boateng, Alaba, Davies – Kimmich, Goretzka – Sané, Musiala, Coman – Lewandowski