Bayern Munich was not at its best against Schalke 04, but the Bavarians still dunked on the Royal Blues anyway for a 2-0 victor.
Here are some quick hitters on what was the last Bayern Munich match that we are going to get for quite a while:
- The lineup definitely had a surprise look:
- Joshua Kimmich at right-back, Lucas Hernandez at left-back, plus Leroy Sané and Jamal Musiala as dual attacking midfielders in what was listed as a 4-1-4-1. That is how the ESPN broadcast presented it and how it looked most of the time.
- I don’t think Kimmich had a bad game at right-back, but he was really rusty early on. Adjusting to the angles you need to play and how the outside players (even on Schalke 04) can accelerate took Kimmich a little while to adjust to.
- Defensively, Bayern Munich was just really solid overall. Hernandez was probably the weakest of the defenders in the match and he was not bad by any means either. Benjamin Pavard and Dayot Upamecano manned the central defense extremely well.
- Like Nagelsmann, I like the concept of having a free-flowing formation where players are interchanging positions frequently and on the fly. Unlike Nagelsmann (I think), I am very wary of that application of that concept. I think it was a problem in the second half of last season for Bayern Munich and I fear that it creates undisciplined play and creates a little too much risk with this group of Bayern Munich players. Collectively, there are times where the play changes from brazen to reckless in a blink. Against Schalke 04, a team like Bayern Munich typically will not get hurt in those situations, but when taking on better sides later in the season, things could get dicey.
- Offensively, the performance was choppy — and maybe a little uninspired. Bayern Munich was likely looking a little bit past this match as the World Cup looms. It’s natural (though we always hate to see it).
- Gnabry’s 39th minute goal was a terrific bit of interplay between Gnabry, Kimmich, and Musiala. Kimmich’s run drew in the backline’s attention and Musiala’s back-heel to Gnabry was sweet. even though Musiala’s pass wasn’t right on the money, it was close enough for Gnabry to make a play.
- Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting’s 52nd minute goal was a nice, tidy finish. The quick counter-attack was awesome to watch unfold and Musiala did everything right in drawing in the defenders before sliding a pass to Choupo-Moting.
- I was cool to see Schalke 04’s Sidi Sané check in against his brother’s team.
- It was good to see Paul Wanner get some time as well.
- There might not be a person happier than Hansi Flick to see the current form of Gnabry.
- Overall, it was another case of Bayern Munich doing what it needed to do to snare three points. Take that and run to the bank ahead of the World Cup break.
As expected, Bayern Munich defender Benjamin Pavard’s recent declaration that he is open to looking at new countries after being in Germany for seven years has created a transfer buzz.
Logically, his words have not gone unnoticed. In fact, information published by CalcioMercato.it has taken advantage of the situation to put on the table the names of the teams that, after listening to the defender, would be delighted to open their doors to him.
The portal includes two great clubs from Serie A, AC Milan and Juventus , among its suitors, but it also points out that teams of the stature of Real Madrid or Paris Saint-Germain would welcome the idea of reaching out to a soccer player from his experience (he has 139 games for Bayern) and versatility (although he usually plays as a right back, he can also perform at an optimal level as a central defender).
If he listens to the wishes of his pupil and finally studies his departure, it remains to be seen how much money Bayern demands to give the green light to the goodbye of a player whose contract runs until June 2024. At the time, the Munich players paid about 30 M €, but given the situation they may have to settle for a somewhat lower amount.
Could Bayern Munich have one more weapon to worry about against Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League? Maybe.
PSG are also keen on Atletico Madrid’s Joao Felix, with a January loan bid expected to arrive.
I don’t think this move will happen, but if it somehow does, the nightmare scenario of Felix scoring a “dagger through the heart” goal to bounce Bayern Munich from the competition could be in play.
Former Bayern Munich boss Hansi Flick named his squad for the World Cup in Qatar and boy, did it get people reacting.
There were some obvious choices, some surprises, and some head scratchers, but that is exactly why we are here — let’s react and hash out where we thought Flick got it right and where he might have gotten it wrong. Here is what we have on tap:
- An overview of the position groups and who the starters might be.
- Where the Bayern Munich boys fits into the mix.
- What some options are for Flick to look at in his attack.
- Why Joshua Kimmich and Leon Goretzka should get the call as starters.
- Why it appears that Flick valued versatility?
- The surprising return of Mario Götze and the stunning — and possibly regrettable — omission of Mats Hummels.
- Also, we talk about Bayern Munich’s recent form, the impressive run the team is on, why it might take some time to get back to that level after the World Cup, and MORE!
Despite reports to the contrary, Manchester United is reportedly still very interested in FC Barcelona midfielder and Dutch international Frenkie de Jong:
Frenkie De Jong has changed his role at FC Barcelona, which last summer declared him transferable as a great candidate for that important sale that could help clean up the coffers of the Catalan entity. With Manchester United as a great suitor and the player clearly refusing a change of scene, maintaining a firm position.
The Sunday Times now tells that in the team coached by Erik Ten Hag they have returned to the fray for the player. And it is that he has budgeted the Old Trafford team no less than 100 M € of investment to improve his midfield in the winter market. Among other things with this player as a great goal.
He has already shown his desire to stay and it does not seem that now Xavi Hernández’s team, where he has earned a place as a starter, is willing to let him go. But that clear improvement in his performance has also sparked interest from the Red Devils.
How much does Arsenal FC like Shakhtar Donetsk winger Mykhaylo Mudryk? Well...a lot it seems:
Arsenal have lodged a firm offer with Shakhtar Donetsk to sign winger Mykhaylo Mudryk. A bid of €60m is on the table and has not yet been turned down. (Mirko Di Natale)
Thomas Müller can do it all on the football field (apparently):