While a coaching change can bring much-needed fresh air, it can also mean a reset to established patterns and flows. New Bayern Munich manager Thomas Tuchel spoke about the challenges of restoring his team’s fluidity and familiarity in attack after the weekend’s 2-0 win over Hertha Berlin — in which the Bavarians utterly dominated every category but didn’t manage to get on the scoresheet until the 69th minute.
Archie-Rind Tutt flagged down Tuchel for an informative and fruitful discussion after the match:
Asked Tuchel about where he starts with getting the automatisms / choreographed attacking play going. Found his response quite interesting. Talking amongst other things a struggle for coolness. @ESPNFC pic.twitter.com/JKOoSMOqPH— Archie Rhind-Tutt (@archiert1) April 30, 2023
“Yeah, if you come in April, it’s obviously not much time in the toughest time of the season!” Tuchel admitted. “Things like [deciding] to control with the chest instead of heading, it’s also for me a matter of anticipation, a matter of coolness, a matter of self-confidence, and I feel that we struggle.
“We want to do it, this team wants to give everything, [even] in every training session...but many times it’s important to tell them to breathe, to calm down, to let the ball do the work. They don’t have to do all the work themselves. And we will find these automatisms, I’m very very sure.”
Bayern have looked just lacking a little in sync in recent games, and in part it could be down to a clash of styles in the manager transition. In one moment, for example, Leon Goretzka played a quick first-time pass back to Kingsley Coman — a staple under Julian Nagelsmann — but the winger was already racing to get in behind in search of a crossing position.
The shift from intricate combinations in tight areas in the half-spaces to wing play and cross delivery hasn’t been entirely smooth. It’s left Jamal Musiala with — so far — less space to shine and many an excellent cross from a full-back or winger has failed to find any takers at the far post.
But all it takes is a few goals to get the confidence back and the creative juices flowing again. Bayern will hope that with the win, the ball is set in motion already.
“At the moment, with results lacking, you feel the tension,” Tuchel added. “If you see our warm-up before the game, we are tense, we are tight. We want it too much. Players are maybe concerned about the situation; we lost the lead in the league. And you can see the difference, when we score two...it’s a step forward, but still a lot to do, of course.”
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