Bayern Munich sacked Julian Nagelsmann and hired Thomas Tuchel in what was certainly a rough and unreasonable time for such a vast change. Tuchel was tasked with ‘saving’ the treble and turning Bayern’s fortunes around, and while that didn’t work out as intended, Tuchel certainly couldn’t help but be shocked at the squad he was now in charge of.
According to a report from Sport1 and kicker, Tuchel’s initial assessment of the team had him question whether or not Joshua Kimmich was ‘really a #6’ — a conflict that is still ongoing while Tuchel remains in pursuit of a true defensive midfielder. He also noticed the lack of a strong striker — both concerns were heightened and Tuchel’s fears were confirmed after the bumpy start to his tenure.
But it is not just that. Tuchel sometimes literally ‘couldn’t believe his eyes’ when he saw the pathetic state of the squad. Not just personnel or performance-wise, but his shock encompassed the team’s physical and mental state. The Sadio Mané and Leroy Sané situation after the loss to Manchester City in the Champions League was further proof of his assessment.
Tuchel sensed that the squad was unable to function well together and there was a lot of friction between the players — a situation he felt the previous management of Oliver Kahn and Hasan Salihamidzic were responsible for. Apparently, he felt that the ex-bosses had put together a ‘completely inharmonious structure’.
Now that the previous bosses have been replaced, the new ones wasted no time and addressed the need for a striker by making a statement in Harry Kane. However, they still have work to do with the squad this winter as a true defensive midfielder remains a priority for the German coach.
Thomas Tuchel has managed massive egos such as those of Kylian Mbappé and his stars at Chelsea FC, such a report means it must have been something mind-boggling for him to react this way.
Either way, the report states facts about the team that the fans are now able to witness clearly. It is becoming more and more evident as time passes that Kimmich is not a #6 and Bayern lacks a strong defensive and press-resistant presence in midfield.
And it was very clear that after the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, there was a problem with the player’s mentalities and passion for the team — something that is still evident now.
Tuchel was certainly right to be shocked and work towards fixing them because these were problems that were going to come out eventually anyway. The wins against Paris Saint-Germain seemed to cover up something that was clear right after Bayern drew three games back to back and lost their grasp on the Bundesliga title right after the World Cup was over and domestic leagues resumed.
While some problems have been addressed, there is still a lot to be done squad-wise if Bayern aspires to get their hands on a coveted 7th Champions League trophy.