Back 4? Hybrid 3/4? Back 3? Back 2? Who knows?
It doesn’t really matter at this point because, well, it’s a friendly. But, Julian Nagelsmann tried a bit of everything and it does leave a lot of questions for next season. In the first half, it seemed like Noussair Mazraoui was the one in a hybrid role although Alphonso Davies was also pushing forward. The formation seemed to consist of a proper back four in the second half and I liked what I saw of Josip Stanisic.
Amazing opening 16 minutes by Bayern
The first 16 minutes was stunning from Bayern. All the combinations worked delightfully and it was so easy on the eye that it made me almost....dare I say...no I won’t because INNN will tell me I have jinxed things. D.C. United, a team which I believe is in midseason, seemed lost and did not have many answers. Sadio Mané and Serge Gnabry seemed to share the responsibilities up front.
Praise for Paul Wanner, Lucas Copado, Josip Stanisic
I cannot believe Wanner is 16! It was an incredible performance from him as he ran rings around players again and again. Copado was impressive too in his half while Stanisic performed solidly in his half too. Stanisic might be pushed down the pecking order because of Bayern’s new purchases but I have always liked him and am interested in seeing where his career goes.
Thoughts on Joshua Zirkzee, Kingsley Coman and Thomas Müller
When Thomas Müller came onto the pitch in the second half, Bayern seemed newly energized and reorganized. The game had slowed down after the first 18 minutes or so but, even in the grueling D.C. heat. Müller’s leading abilities made Bayern seem like a superbly cohesive and fun-to-watch unit. He seemed the furthest player up although Joshua Zirkzee was also in that particular lineup.
Meanwhile, Kingsley Coman continued to deliver consistently as he has done ever since his Champions League winning goal. His consistency after his initial years at Bayern amazes me. He had a great game and created room for many opportunities including Zirkzee.
Zirkzee scored a poacher’s goal and showed glimpses of a true #9 but also showed why he shouldn’t be the starting #9. He seemed off the pace at times and there is definitely room for improvement. It is worth trying though, especially after his stint in Belgium.
That’s it from me! That was a fun friendly and I hope you enjoyed it! As always, thank you for reading!