One of the key points for Julian Nagelsmann in managing a stacked roster at Bayern Munich was his ability to use the team’s personnel in a variety of different ways to keep the opposition off balance — and players happy by using them in different roles.
Now, though, Nagelsmann will reportedly commit to a 4-2-3-1 system and also have players focus on specific positions within the attack per kicker’s Georg Holzner.
On Monday, we saw that Thomas Müller’s reign at Bayern Munich’s No. 10 is over as he will be replaced by Jamal Musiala. Müller will now compete with Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting for time at striker.
Per Holzner (as captured by @iMiaSanMia), the other positional battles look like this:
The 4-2-3-1 system is set to be confirmed for the second half of the season with the positions distributed as follows:
RW: Serge Gnabry, Leroy Sané
LW: Kingsley Coman, Sadio Mané
AM: Jamal Musiala, Ryan Gravenberch
ST: Eric-Maxim Choupo-Moting, Thomas Müller
At some point before he picked up an injury, Müller hit a wall and was not impacting games on the scoresheet. This happens to all players, so an immediate declaration that he is no longer the team’s No. 10 seems at least a little hasty.
To see him replaced by Musiala will certainly be tough for some fans, but keeping Musiala on the bench was no longer an option — at least for now. For whatever reason, Nagelsmann also no longer see Musiala as a winger, which puts the versatile and creative Musiala in a one-position silo.
The other positional battles reek of gripes waiting to happen.
Gnabry and Sané certainly can’t like the prospect of having to split time (at best), while Coman has to look at how much Mané played in the Hinrunde and think there will not be much playing time in his future.
Gravenberch’s situation really has not improved much either as his biggest competitor is already ahead of him on the depth chart — and is younger.
Regardless, this seems like Nagelsmann is trying be more organized with this squad and less free-flowing with his positions and player flexibility.
Will it work? We’ll find out in the coming months...