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Match awards from Bayern’s hard-fought 3-2 win against FC Köln

It wasn’t the prettiest win Bayern’s had in recent times, but it was a win against a steely and determined Köln side.

FC Bayern München v 1. FC Köln - Bundesliga Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

Julian Nagelsmann secured his win with Bayern Munich in the Bundesliga against FC Köln. The visitors were determined to give a tough time and snatch more than just one point but the Bavarians showed grit and diligence to win the game and seal all three points. Without further ado, lets dive into the match awards:

Jersey Swap: Steffen Baumgart

FC Bayern München v 1. FC Köln - Bundesliga Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

The Köln coach brought the game to the Bavarians. He had a bold plan coming to the Allianz Arena and his team did a great job executing it. The Billy Goats had a brilliant block set up in front of their box that saw their players converge to and stop advancing Bayern attackers. Blocking the “cut-in” channels of the Bayern wingers, the opposition did well to dry up Bayern’s supply into the box. The solid Köln defence coupled with Bayern’s own passing (that was having an off day), the visitors had an impressive 18 interceptions compared to Bayern’s 7.

Even after going down by two goals, Baumgart’s men were completely convinced of their plans and saw their boldness and bravery rewarded with two quick goals to level things at 2-2. Their attack was quick and incisive that caught the Bayern back four off guard. A third goal was on the cards and Köln were unfortunate to not return with a point.

Der Kaiser: Alphonso Davies

The Canadian kid is back after an underwhelming 2020/2021 season. He was the best player on the pitch in the first half and followed it up with a solid performance in the second half. Going up against another speedster in Kingsley Ehizibue, Davies did superbly to own his flank. Phonzie’s been working on his upper body strength and that was evident on the pitch today. While they have always been matched for pace, today Davies outmuscled Ehizibue and came out on top in several of their duels. In all, he won 8 of the 13 duels he was involved in and made 4 recoveries.

The Bavarian roadrunner was no slouch going forward, especially in the first half when Bayern needed some extra oomph from the rest of the squad to help their attackers. Davies did just that having 5 successful dribbles of the 6 attempted.

Fußballgott: Thomas Müller

FC Bayern München v 1. FC Köln - Bundesliga Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

Today’s win was an industrious one and the players, not being on top of their form, had to work very hard today. And Thomas Muller was the engine that drove the Bavarian machine. Muller put his head down and worked his socks off to help the rest of the squad.

The home side lost possession several times and Muller had to put in extra effort to apply pressure and win back the ball. His 4 tackles won were the team’s highest and his 6 tackles attempted show the work rate Tommy was putting in to ensure Bayern held possession and didn’t lose control of the game.

Köln’s structured block meant Thomas was roaming around more than usual to find space and create chances. He delivered a perfect cross to assist Gnabry’s first and Bayern’s second goal. This is probably one of the few times I’ve seen Müller not smiling in between plays. It was work, work, and more work. A selfless performance from Mr. Bayern.

Der Bomber: Serge Gnabry

FC Bayern München v 1. FC Köln - Bundesliga Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

The Weissach special had a typical performance scoring a brace with two lethal finishes. The period immediately after 50 minutes might as well be named “Gnabry time”. He’s come alive several times post the 50 minute mark and it was one of those nights today. Serge’s first goal wasn’t a simple tap in after Müller’s cross was deflected by a Köln defender. The ball arrived at mid waist level and he timed his jump to perfection to make just the right connection with the ball and send it past Timo Horn. The second goal was a straight up banger that gave Bayern the crucial lead to seal all three points. If he can repeat such performances consistently, Serge is easily the best winger in the squad.

Meister of the Match: Jamal Musiala

FC Bayern München v 1. FC Köln - Bundesliga Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

Young Jamal Musiala’s half-time sub turned out to be the X factor that Bayern needed after a fruitless first half. With the wingers routes into the box blocked off, it wasn’t until Jamal Musiala took the other route and played along the touchline did the first goal come for Bayern. Jamal was exquisite in possession and slipped through the opposition several times. On another day, the rest of the squad would have converted Jamal’s runs into a few more goals, but it wasn’t to be today.

Musiala was nearly impossible to dispossess, was a nuisance to the opposition drawing 2-3 men several times and freeing up space in the process. Making 8 successful dribbles, Jamal carried the ball through a lot of traffic to create space and dangerous chances. It was amusing to watch the Koln players tackle Jamal and the 18-year-old just dancing around them. His presence was more than just a freestyling contest as Bayern’s attack had a lot more teeth after he came on and his assist to Lewandowski gave the home side the breakthrough they needed.