For only being with Bayern Munich for a matter of months, Thomas Tuchel has found himself in some dramatic situations.
Last season, a late goal from Jamal Musiala and some choking from Borussia Dortmund saved Tuchel from going oh-for-the-season with trophies, but that — somehow — seems more promising than his current situation.
Bayern Munich suffered through an embarrassing defeat at the hands of 3. Liga side FC Saarbrücken and now heads into Westfalenstadion reeling and banged up.
There will be no Joshua Kimmich, no Matthijs de Ligt, maybe no Dayot Upamecano, and a host of banged up players including Serge Gnabry, Leon Goretzka, and Raphaël Guerreiro. Oh...and Manuel Neuer is still shaking off the rust from having roughly 10 months off.
An ideal situation, this is not.
Sport1’s Kerry Hau (via @iMiaSanMia) added more fuel to the fire with a report indicating that Tuchel is grating on the locker room and also that questions are being raised about his ability to lead the group moving forward:
There are ‘first frictions’ between Thomas Tuchel and the team in the dressing room. Questions are being asked at Säbener Straße about the lack of footballing improvement since Tuchel took over half a year ago. Several players don’t feel involved and are surprised with the coach being distant. Tuchel ‘has his players’ with whom he speaks a lot outside team meetings, like Harry Kane or Leroy Sané, but he hardly communicates with other players — even regular starters. Some would only find out from assistant coach Zsolt Löw whether they are playing or not
In addition, Tuchel’s public criticism of his squad, especially his midfield, was not well received in the dressing room either. The relationship has been rather difficult since then, especially with Joshua Kimmich. Tuchel therefore has to be careful that he doesn’t lose some players like Kimmich and that the cracks in the dressing room don’t get bigger, especially with results such as in Saarbrücken.
(If you want a deeper dive into what Hau is reporting, check out Ineednoname’s coverage of the story here)
Ah...there they are, those pesky little issues that always seem to arise at clubs where Tuchel takes the helm. The manager will have to deal with those another time, though. Right now, the only way to he can quiet the noise is with his team going to Borussia Dortmund and showing that he still has some positive influence over the group.
Maybe more than anything — even the end result — what fans will be watching is how an undermanned, somewhat dysfunctional, and always maddening Bayern Munich squad responds to a stiff challenge in a tough environment.
Fans want to see fight, they want to see energy, they want to see exciting, relentless attacking football, and they want to see an organized and efficient midfield and backline.
They will not want to see poor body language, frustration, bickering, and blank looks of confusion that precede a collective unraveling. Moreover, they will not want to hear a coach griping about his players after the match. Nope, none of that, they just want to see some sign of life and also for the team to remember that it is Die Rekordmeister.
Will Bayern Munich circle the wagons and fight through a very difficult situation? Or will the squad wilt and meander through another hapless performance under a coach that some within the club — allegedly — are rapidly losing confidence in?
This fighting spirit of Bayern Munich in this match will tell fans all they need to know about where things are headed under Tuchel.
Does he have the connection and influence to coax the team to a win?
How will Der Klassiker play out?
This poll is closed
Bayern Munich wins convincingly!
Bayern Munich wins an exciting nailbiter and proves its mettle!
Bayern Munich scuffles through the match and only gets a win because Borussia Dortmund is worse.
Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund draw.
Bayern Munich fights its heart out, but loses.
Bayern Munich chokes away a potential win and loses.
Bayern Munich gets wrecked by Borussia Dortmund.
Bavarian Podcast Works — Weekend Warm-up Podcast: Season 3, Episode 17
Bayern Munich has had a week, eh?
After some brief optimism seeped into the general public’s feeling about the squad, the Bavarians went out and got “out-hearted” (not a word, but we’re going with it!) by 3. Liga side FC Saarbrücken in the DFB-Pokal in what was a horrendous result for Die Rekordmeister.
Why wait any longer, let’s dig into what is on tap for this week’s episode:
- A preview of Bayern Munich vs. Borussia Dortmund in Der Klassiker.
- Breaking down Bayern Munich’s devastating upset loss to FC Saarbrücken in the DFB-Pokal. What went wrong? How did this happen? Why does this keep happening? Is this team tacking heart and accountability? Let’s discuss.
- Is Bayern Munich planning to pursue Bayer Leverkusen’s Florian Wirtz this summer regardless of a potential Jamal Musiala transfer?
Song of the Week: “Superman” by Goldfinger
Back in the 90s, there was a somewhat brief rise of “ska” into the mainstream.
The Mighty Mighty Bosstones (who had been around forever), Reel Big Fish, Less than Jake, and many others had arisen from that part of the music culture where they lived and were on alt-radio on the regular.
The 90s...were interesting.
Grunge, ska, a revival of swing, and the birth of emo all emerged at one point or another in an era where people had started to open up their musical horizons. Making it more complicated, there were musical mergers of different genres, which created some pretty crazy sounds. For instance, the ska of the 90s — in some cases — was referred to as ska-punk.
One of those punk bands that morphed into a ska-punk band was Goldfinger. Aside of covering WWU-favorite “99 Luftballons” by Nena (RELEASE THE TAPE), Goldfinger gained notoriety for releasing “Superman” and seeing it end up as part of Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater — which even for a non-gamer like myself — was a huge deal back in the day for any band.
Anyway, I found “Superman” in the movie Kingpin (an underrated 90s flick) a long time ago and fire it up every once in a while to remind myself of a much more carefree time! Goldfinger is more than just a ska-punk band, though, and has shifted its sound more toward its traditional punk sound over the years.
What else is there to say? Bayern Munich is injured, coming off of a terrible loss, and — reportedly — has a locker room that is not all that fond of the coach.
When factoring in that the squad will go on the road to face off with the The Yellow Wall, things are not lining up for a victory for the Bavarians. However, if there is one team that has perfected the art of hacking up key games, it is Borussia Dortmund.
Until BVB can prove it can — and will — win a big game, it is hard to pick the Black and Yellows against Bayern Munich.
Can it happen? Sure. Will it happen? Probably not this time.
If it does, though....
Prediction: Borussia Dortmund 1-2 Bayern Munich
Other Bundesliga predictions include:
- SV Darmstadt 98 1-2 VfL Bochum
- FC Köln 2-1 FC Augsburg
- SC Freiburg 1-0 Borussia Mönchengladbach
- Hoffenheim 2-2 Bayer Leverkusen
- Mainz 05 1-4 RB Leipzig
- Union Berlin 1-1 Eintracht Frankfurt
- VfL Wolfsburg 2-0 Werder Bremen
- Heidenheim 1-3 VfB Stuttgart
- Bundesliga Last Active Week: 5-4
- Bundesliga Total: 41-31
- DFB-Pokal Total: 1-1
- Champions League Total: 3-0
- DFL-Supercup: 0-1
- Total: 45-33