Bayern Munich had an extremely successful season and many players put forth excellent campaigns, but some others did not quite live up to the standard in place.
When assessing what constitutes a disappointment, you could really go with performances on — and off — the field. Was Leroy Sane’s initial campaign disappointing? Was Niklas Süle’s first year after knee surgery not up to the standard you had in mind for him? Did any other transfers let you down?
For our staff, the responses varied:
- Marc Roca: Who? I know, right? Roca could not break through this season and failed to impress Hansi Flick. At €8 million, he was a cheap depth option, but to think Bayern almost splurged as much as €40 million on him during the summer of 2019 seems insane. Anyway, Roca did nothing and couldn’t be counted on even when players like Joshua Kimmich, Leon Goretzka, and Corentin Tolisso were banged up.
- Douglas Costa: I thought he’d be good. Instead, he was the worst player on the team by some margin. Given that he was already familiar with the squad and came from a decent team like Juventus, you’d expect more from the Brazilian. We had to pay 11m in wages for this guy — money down the drain.
- David Alaba: This is bound to be a ridiculously unpopular opinion but, I only say this because of the incredibly high standards of consistency David Alaba himself has set over the years. His inconsistency at the heart of the Bayern defense really cost the team; he only got his act together late on in the season. It came down to between Benjamin Pavard (a very stop-start season) and Alaba for me, especially as Pavard set such high standards last season. But Pavard is still young in terms of his Bayern career and still growing. Alaba has been an established Bayern player for years, and, if there was ever a necessity for consistency from a defender, it was this season. By no means did Alaba have a bad season. By the standard of an average defender, he had a good, if somewhat rough, season. But by his standards and the club’s standards, Alaba had a season he will want to forget quickly.
- Douglas Costa: The loan of the Brazilian to be an another option on the wings looked like a good and economical move at the time of his arrival. However, Costa largely failed to impress neither the coach nor the fans. While Flick barely gave Costa any minutes, the winger was wasteful and looked to be on a different page from the rest of the team. As the season progressed, Costa’s attitude and performances gave the impression of a player waiting for the season to end.
- David Alaba: The likes of Douglas Costa and Bouna Sarr were objectively worse than Alaba, miles worse, in fact. But personally speaking, my hopes for both players were not that high. They were signed as stopgap players to warm the bench and only come on in case of injury or suspension, which they did (not that they did a good job). Alaba, on the other hand, was our starting center back, one who had been in outstanding form the previous season. This season, though, he was a shadow of his former self, making uncharacteristic and unnecessary mistakes. Also, he ended his time with Bayern on a sour note with wage and transfer rumors constantly permeating the team all season long. While Jerome Boateng and Javi Martinez’s farewells tugged at my heartstrings, Alaba’s didn’t really make me feel the way I did for the others. There were so many ways that he could have parted amicably with Bayern, but I guess we’ll never know.
- Serge Gnabry: The German winger was far too inconsistent and far too often in the injury room for Bayern Munich this past season. Gnabry was one of the standouts from Bayern’s historic 19-20 treble season yet lacked his finishing boots and decision making from the previous season. Bar a few fleeting exceptional performances, Gnabry was incredibly frustrating to watch, his selfish play becoming unbearable at times.
BFW Postseason Breakdown: Bayern Munich’s Biggest Disappointment
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