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Former star doubts ability of Bayern Munich’s Joshua Kimmich to play defensive midfield

Everyone is getting their shots in.

VfL Bochum v FC Bayern München - Bundesliga Photo by M. Donato/FC Bayern via Getty Images

Jens Lehmann might have spent the majority of his career playing for Schalke 04, Borussia Dortmund, and Arsenal FC, but the former German national team goalkeeper has some thoughts when it comes to Bayern Munich.

When speaking to Bild (as captured by @iMiaSanMia), Lehmann questioned Joshua Kimmich’s ability to properly man the 6 position and said that Kimmich’s best attributes fall mostly on the offensive side of the field.

“He’s playing as a number six, but I’m not sure if he’s a real number six. Kimmich is a good player, but his strengths lie more in attack than in defense. I know other number sixes who are more defensively aware,” Lehmann said.

The timing of the criticism is a bit tough given that Bayern Munich coach left Kimmich in what amounted toa 4-1-4-1 in a blowout loss to VfL Bochum. Certainly Kimmich misses the the stability that injured midfielder helps provide in the center of the park, but Kimmich’s subpar performance over the weekend definitely had more to do with scheme than ability.

Perhaps Kimmich has not been as effective this season defensively, but both Bayern Munich and Germany have committed to Kimmich as the defensive midfielder in their respective formations. Like many of the other Bavarians who have scuffled at times this season, Kimmich is only a few days from getting the chance to prove his doubters wrong.

Can the 27-year-old show his defensive chops against Red Bull Salzburg in the Champions League? We’ll find out soon enough.

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