After Bayern Munich managed to see out a nervy 2-1 win over VfB Stuttgart on Saturday, Julian Nagelsmann was asked a key question: will Thomas Muller start against Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League? In case you’re wondering why this is such a big deal, the coach’s decision to bench Muller in the first leg of the Round of 16 tie in Paris was met with a fair amount of criticism.
While Bayern came away from that game with a goal and a win, many observers and analysts noted that the team seemed stunted in attack, and could’ve done more with in the 1st half where Paris played without Kylian Mbappe. Nagelsmann’s explanation for leaving Muller out of the lineup was met with some skepticism.
Julian Nagelsmann says the decision was between Müller and Choupo-Moting and he picked the latter: "We had a long discussion. We decided for Choupo, a classic striker. Thomas was having a good momentum, it was a close call. I spoke to him too"— Bayern & Germany (@iMiaSanMia) February 14, 2023
Then, against Gladbach, Muller started but was subbed off early after Dayot Upamecano received a red card. This prompted several more questions about the 33-year-old’s place in the team and how the coach actually sees him. As always, when Thomas Muller gets benched, Bayern Munich fans start to panic a little.
Now, two games later and on the back of several great performances, it looks like the Raumdeuter is finally going to be a permanent fixture on Julian Nagelsmann’s teams. Here’s what he said after the game:
News #FCBPSG : Nagelsmann just asked Sky on whether Thomas Muller will play against Paris on Wednesday? “If he is healthy, he will play!”
This is big news because Muller has been on fire for Bayern Munich in 2023 so far. He has 2 goals and 5 assists in just 458 minutes, which comes out to 1.38 goal contributions per 90 minutes. That’s a stellar ratio and is the kind of quality you need in the Champions League.
Let’s hope the rest of the coach’s lineup is equally promising.
As always, we appreciate all the support!