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Three observations from Bayern Munich’s stunning 4-2 loss to VfL Bochum

In what amounts to the Bundesliga’s upset of the season, VfL Bochum thoroughly dominated Der Rekordmeister .

VfL Bochum v FC Bayern München - Bundesliga Photo by Joosep Martinson/Getty Images

Bayern Munich’s defense is still a mess

Where do I even begin with this one? Niklas Süle’s one-on-one defense vs. Christopher Antwi-Adjei which tied the match 1-1 early in the first half was very much “one foot out of the door”-ish and it looks clear to me, as of writing this piece, that Süle might be better off already at Borussia Dortmund if this is what he’s going to give Bayern for the remainder of the season.

Honestly, after watching this game Süle should no longer put on the crest of FC Bayern ever again. He played like a man who simply did not care anymore. Dayot Upamecano is still struggling, still reliably consistent in having both an incredible flash and boneheaded move all in the same game. Thankfully, he’s still incredibly young and has shown enough to warrant continued playing time. For what it's worth, Virgil van Dijk was playing for Celtic when he was Upamecano’s age, so there is still plenty of time.

Benjamin Pavard is....still Benjamin Pavard. The best way I can describe Benji is “aiight” — nothing special. Lucas Hernandez has consistently been FC Bayern’s best defensive player, which is especially noteworthy given he’s playing at his less preferred left-back position instead of center-back, but above all, FC Bayern is absolutely missing Alphonso Davies. His pace, attacking acumen, and overall “Phonzie-ness” is a key cog of this defense running full steam, and with his still out due to Myocarditis and no update as of yet, there are concerns about his late-season and Champions League availability.

Let’s also not ignore the fact Manuel Neuer was suddenly deemed out for a number of weeks due to a knee injury. Bayern’s defense is operating far from any acceptable level at the moment, and it showed especially during Bochum’s incredible 4-1 first half against Bayern. Bochum scored three goals in under 10 minutes. Julian Nagelsmann needs to make changes fast, and whatever it is, he has to hope it’ll fix the lagging consistency issues.

I mean, for all that is holy, Bochum got TWO goals called off for offsides within the first five minutes of the second half.

VfL Bochum players had the game of their careers

VfL Bochum, take a bloody bow! Yes, FC Bayern are playing horrendously at the moment, but this section is not about Bayern’s failures, instead it is more about Bochum’s successes. First, there was Christopher Antwi-Adjei’s solo goal vs Süle that was top tier. Their second goal was an excellent build up play that resulted in an unfortunate penalty on Upamecano. I cannot blame him for that as it just appeared to be an unfortunate swing of the hand and hardly intentional.

But goals number three and four? Oh my word Bochum, take a bow. Honestly, goal number three I have no words for. So instead, take a look yourself.

For goal number four? Same thing applies. Bochum with a double dagger late in the second half to just completely split open this game. While FC Bayern has been badly throughout this game, as these two goals show, Bochum are having the game of their clubs career.

Death, taxes, and Robert Lewandowski scoring

I do not think there is a more valuable player for FC Bayern Munich than our Polish talisman, Robert Lewandowski. Lewandowski is the only player worth highlighting in this match as the rest of the squad from Thomas Müller to Joshua Kimmich performed far below their normal top-tier level.

Even though FC Bayern lost to two absurdly special Bochum goals, Lewandowski kept his ridiculous scoring pace, netting a brace against Bochum. Quite frankly, Lewandowski should have had four goals if it was not for Bochum’s swarming defense on a rather-spectacular bicycle kick in the first half and the bloody woodwork in the second half as he nailed the woodwork late in the second half for an absurd seventh time this season. Lewandowski’s brace marked his 25th Bundesliga goal of the season for the sixth time in his illustrious career, and now Lewandowski needs to only score 16 more goals in the final 14 games to break his own record which he just set last year.


If you’re looking for more analysis of the game, why not check out our postgame podcast? Listen to it below or at this link.

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