The Bayern Munich backline — whether it is a back-four or back-three — has lacked cohesion for most of the season.
Perhaps it is the constantly changing tactics, the injuries, or the frequent rotations, but something is amiss — and per kicker (as captured by Twitter account @iMiaSanMia), the club sees a void in leadership on defense.
When looking at the current crop of defenders, you can see each player has talent, but is likely lacking that special trait to command a defense.
Niklas Sule is leaving the club next season, but was never that larger than life presence that his physical stature begets. Lucas Hernandez is a good player and locker room persona, but not the overwhelming personality needed to be the face — and voice — of the backline.
Neither Benjamin Pavard nor Dayot Upamecano has played well enough to warrant such a role and neither is overly vocal anyway. As a left-back, Alphonso Davies is not exactly in a position to lead the defense and give Julian Nagelsmann’s fondness for back-three formations, we could see him further up the pitch as a wing-back anyway.
So, what Bayern Munich is missing is that one commanding personality to be the face of the defense.
Where will that player come from?
That is a great question that does not have an easy answer. Bayern Munich has been linked to both Chelsea FC’s Antonio Rüdiger and Juventus’ Matthias de Ligt, who are both known as leaders, but neither looks like a realistic option.
For now, this looks like an extremely hard role to fill.
In addition, kicker stated that Bayern Munich is also looking for an offensive-minded right-back to play opposite of Davies.