No one...and I mean no one, would question whether or not Bayern Munich is a good team.
In fact, you would not find many people who would argue against the Bavarians being one of the top four or five teams in the world.
That is just how good Julian Nagelsmann’s side is.
Still, there have been enough cracks in the foundation for this season to make even serious fans waver a bit about whether or not this particular squad can get the job done in the Champions League.
The squad is supremely talented, deep, and has an innovative, relatable coach, who gets along with his players.
So...what’s the deal? How can the team look so good against Red Bull Salzburg one moment and so frustratingly average against Hoffenheim just a few days later?
Many fans and pundits have pointed to Nagelsmann’s use of a 3-4-2-1 formation, despite not having the proper parts to necessarily make it work at an optimal level. With no real wing-backs available until Alphonso Davies returns, Nagelsmann is hedging his bets that his offense will be able generate enough chances and create enough chaos to limit his opponents.
Some other supporters will point to the fact that while Bayern Munich has a lot of collective talent, not all of it is really performing at an acceptable level. Marcel Sabitzer has been a flop and Dayot Upamecano is the poster child for the team’s defensive inconsistency this season. Both Sabitzer and Upamecano have been relegated to the bench. Meanwhile, none of the clubs heralded prospects appear to be ready to step up and contribute.
Instead of lamenting those issues, however, fans could look at things this way: Once Davies and Leon Goretzka are back and take over their starting positions, the squad will have two impact players ready to come in and contribute immediately for every game. Jamal Musiala and whomever is left out among Leroy Sane, Serge Gnabry, and Kingsley Coman can act as game-changing forces for Nagelsmann.
And sure, the formation is going to look great one day and perplexingly average the next — sometimes in the same week — but this team has not given anyone a reason to give up hope for European glory just yet.
So hang in and enjoy the ride, even if it gets bumpy at times.