Bayern Munich huffed and puffed but somehow managed to scramble to a 2-1 victory over Borussia Mönchengladbach. Here are the observations:
Mathys Tel, take a bow
Mathys Tel faced some very unnecessary commentary from fans on social media platforms after Bayern’s defeat against RB Leipzig in the DFL-Supercup. He scored on the opening day against Werder Bremen and then scored again today; today’s goal laid many ghosts to rest for the entire team, considering the venue of the game, and it showed why Bayern refused to loan him out. Tel should have started when Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting was injured last season. And, overall, he is oozing with talent. Bayern has a real star in the making in Tel. And most of all, he has the right attitude.
Bayern might regret loaning out Josip Stanišić
Noussair Mazraoui could have seen a red card today, but Thomas Tuchel took him off at half time. Konrad Laimer was an improvement and helped the team in the second half. The center of defense looked a bit thin and defending on set pieces was overall poor. Stanišić could have provided much needed depth to the back-line; by the look of things today and in the transfer market, Bayern might need to recall Stanišić in January.
Slow, slow, too slow
One of the reasons Bayern struggled to break down Bremen in the first game and Gladbach today was the lack of speed. Kingsley Coman tried to take on too many players at any given time and held onto the ball for too long but was, by far, not the only player guilty of this. Bayern is passing too slowly; too many times, Thomas Müller was seen waiting for the pass to come to him but it never came. Harry Kane perhaps saw even less of it. Thomas Tuchel’s game plan might have been effective to this point; if Bayern does not start playing faster soon, the results might not turn out as positively as they have to date.
The most positive result
Among the three games that Bayern has played in the Bundesliga, this was the best result by far. Against Werder Bremen, Bayern had an early goal; against Augsburg, Bayern received a lot of assistance from their opponents to go 2-0 up. Today, Bayern went behind against an opponent they struggle with. Even though this was the weakest Gladbach side Bayern played in years, this result will give both teams some more belief. This will help Bayern believe that they do not need to rely on Harry Kane’s goals to win games and can come from behind. As for Gladbach, this might help them find their footing and not possibly get dragged into a relegation battle.
And next up, after the international break, is Bayer Leverkusen...