Bayern Munich’s 2-1 loss at Mainz was arguably one of their worst collective performances of the season. After going 1-0 down by virtue of a Jonathan Burkhardt goal inside of the opening three minutes, Bayern never really looked like they were going to do enough to conjure up a response like they did in the hinrunde meeting between the two sides where they scored five unanswered goals after conceding two early on. Robert Lewandowski’s goal in stoppage time, while it took him one closer to Gerd Muller’s record, was a mere consolation as the final whistle blew just seconds later, handing Bo Svensson’s men a massive three points in their fight to stay well clear of the relegation zone.
Speaking after the match, Hansi Flick bluntly said that his side simply wasn’t good enough at the Coface Arena. He gave plenty of credit to the form Mainz is in under Svensson and admitted that Bayern’s squad is really feeling the amount of minutes they’ve played in a short period of time (tz). “We all know that the team has often shown its quality, something like that happens. It’s a shame we couldn’t take the step today. But you have to understand that the team is tired. Today we were too harmless,” he explained.
Admittedly, Flick ceded that there were some noticeable improvements in the second half compared to the first, though it still wasn’t enough. At the break, he made a total of three changes, bringing on Jamal Musiala, Tanguy Nianzou, and Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting for Leon Goretzka, Kingsley Coman, and Leroy Sane. The latter had struggled in the first half to make any impact on the proceedings and were outplayed by Mainz. It also appeared that Goretzka was carrying some sort of minor knock as he was later seen on the bench having a wrap applied around his quad and hamstring. “First, you have to give Mainz a huge compliment. They did very well, were very compact and defended their goal brilliantly. In the first half we weren’t on the pitch as we imagined, it wasn’t a good game. We came in better in the second half. We just have to put the game through, the team has many minutes in their legs. We just weren’t strong enough today,” he said.
It’s rare to describe a Lewandowski performance as mundane, but Flick said that he couldn’t say that he fared any better anyone else on the afternoon. He described the Polish ace’s performance after his injury layover as “quite normal” and added “he didn’t stand out from this team.”
For now, Bayern has to wait at least two weeks to clinch their ninth consecutive Bundesliga title. However, they could be crowned champions if VfB Stuttgart takes points off of RB Leipzig Sunday. Despite the possibility of winning the Bundesliga by virtue of results elsewhere, Flick said he isn’t bothered by that or even worried about it. He just wants to focus on Bayern’s matches. “We want to win every game, that was also the case today. We didn’t perform well, you have to accept that. I never think about other teams, only when we play against them,” he said.